CLEVELAND (WJW) — Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson is out for the season, the team announced Wednesday morning.
The Browns said in a statement that Watson will need to have season-ending shoulder surgery and also has a high ankle sprain.
“Deshaun (Watson) notified our medical staff of a new discomfort in his right shoulder that he felt after a hit in the first half and an MRI of his right shoulder revealed a displaced fracture to the glenoid,” the Browns announced. The glenoid is a shoulder joint.
“It has been determined that this injury will require immediate surgical repair to avoid further structural damage. Deshaun will be placed on season-ending injured reserve and a full recovery is expected for the start of the 2024 season,” the team added.
The Browns said Watson underwent a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) Monday on two injuries sustained on different plays in the first half of Sunday’s 33-31 win over the Baltimore Ravens.
Watson told reporters on Wednesday he “recognized something was wrong” toward the end of the first quarter, but pushed through the sensation. Tests on Monday and Tuesday showed it was “something worse.” It’s still unclear when he suffered the injury, he said.
Deshaun Watson: "I felt like we were turning the corner to really make a run."— John Sabol (@John_Sabol) November 15, 2023
He hopes to start throwing a football in 2-3 months.
Watson added he dealt with pain in the entire 2nd half. Also had a high ankle sprain.
Remember: he went 14-14 in the 2nd half@fox8news
“I’m just trying to process all the information I’ve been getting since last night. It’s tough. I felt like we were really turning a corner. … I believe we still will with the guys in this locker room,” Watson said.
Deshaun Watson says he's not sure when the hit to his shoulder happened in the game. He said he felt something in the 1st qtr and then throughout the game.— John Sabol (@John_Sabol) November 15, 2023
He adds he was shocked when he heard the news. He'll have surgery next week.#Browns@fox8news
Head coach Kevin Stefanski said Deshaun Watson “battled like crazy” after his injury in the Ravens game.
“We’re focused on going 1-0 this week any way we can. … This Steelers team, as we know, is well-coached, really good players. A tough matchup. That front is stout, good players in the back end,” he said.
“The good news” is that Watson is expected to return in 2024, Browns General Manager Andrew Berry told reporters at a Wednesday morning briefing.
Berry said Watson’s injury is completely new and unrelated to his previous injuries this season.
“For Deshaun to play-call at 2 1/2 quarters at a really high level against one of the best defenses in the league … it really is an incredible display of physical and mental toughness on his part,” he said.
Stefanski confirmed Dorian Thompson-Robinson will start in Watson’s absence.
Kevin Stefanski says rookie QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson will start vs. Pittsburgh.— John Sabol (@John_Sabol) November 15, 2023
Stefanski says it's big to give DTR a full week of practice knowing he's the starter.
Remember he found he was going to start vs Baltimore in Wk 4 only a few hours before kickoff#Browns@fox8news
Moving forward, Berry said the front office is confident with the team’s backup quarterbacks. He said he feels confident in Dorian Thompson-Robinson’s progression.
Andrew Berry says Deshaun Watson broke a bone in his shoulder in the 2nd qtr Sunday.— John Sabol (@John_Sabol) November 15, 2023
This is a NEW injury – no relation to previous shoulder injury.
Plan is to play PJ Walker & DTR as the backup. He adds they’re planning to add a third QB in the future.#Browns @fox8news
“Our focus is on our current room. We will at some point add a third quarterback … but right now our focus is on our current room,” Berry said. “We’ve seen [Thompson-Robinson] really grow every week he’s been with us.”
The Browns announced Watson’s shoulder surgery will be done “after consultation with Browns’ Head Physician, James Voos, M.D., and industry-leading shoulder specialist, Neal ElAttrache, M.D.”
Watson said his surgery is scheduled for next week. Immediate surgery is “the best situation” for the longevity of his career, Watson added. Rehabilitation is expected to take “a couple months.”
“The biggest thing is mobility and range of motion. … I’m gonna be working with some great doctors and great staff that has dealt with a lot of this stuff before, with professional baseball guys,” he said.
Berry said the team feels confident about him returning “at the level we’re accustomed to.”
“It’s not like Deshaun is the first quarterback to suffer this injury. … Obviously, you see this more in other positions, but he should make a strong recovery.”
The Browns (6-3) play the Steelers (6-3) this Sunday at 1 p.m. at Cleveland Browns Stadium.