So, what comes next?
Watson and the NFL players’ union will have two days to issue a response to the appeal, which will then be decided by either NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell or a person he designates.
Whoever hears the appeal could decide to increase or decrease the discipline. As of now, there’s no timeline on when Goodell or the designee will rule on that.
According to a statement from the NFL, the league’s personal conduct policy states that the appeal will be processed on an expedited basis.
The appeal also has to be based on a review of the existing record, not referencing back to evidence or testimony not previously considered.
During the appeal, Watson’s discipline could increase, and if that’s the case and it does, he and the player’s union can then decide if they want to file a lawsuit.
During Watson’s three-day disciplinary hearing, the league asked to have Watson suspended for the entire 2022 season.
Meanwhile, neither Watson nor his attorneys have spoken about the discipline yet.
The hearing officer, retired Federal Judge Sue L. Robinson, ruled Monday that Watson violated the NFL’s personal conduct policy, based on allegations of sexual misconduct.
Watson was sued by 24 women who claimed sexual misconduct during massages. 23 of the 24 women have settled. Watson has denied all allegations against him.