Sixteen civil cases filed against the Houston Texans‘ Deshaun Watson through Tuesday accuse him of a range of actions during massage appointments over the past year, from refusing to cover his genitals to forced oral sex. Watson has denied the allegations in the lawsuits, which do not name any of the women. A summary of the alleged behavior, according to the lawsuits:
March 30, 2020, at the plaintiff’s home in Texas. The plaintiff has run a massage therapy business since 2018 and is a licensed therapist. He contacted her via direct message on Instagram and insisted no one else be present during his massage. The woman alleges that Watson exposed his penis and touched her hand with his penis. She says she ended the massage abruptly and Watson told her: “I know you have a career and a reputation, and I know you would hate for someone to mess with yours, just like I don’t want anyone messing with mine.” She says he texted later to apologize but she did not respond.
April 19, 2020, at a Houston spa. The plaintiff, a licensed esthetician who owns her skin care business, says she was contacted by Watson via Instagram. During a massage appointment, Watson directed the woman to work on the crevices in his groin area, the lawsuit states. She says when he rolled over onto his back, he had an erection and repeatedly touched her hand with his penis. He ejaculated, leaving the woman “confused and mortified,” the lawsuit states.
May 28, 2020 at Watson’s home in Houston. The plaintiff, a certified personal trainer who did not specialize in massage, says Watson wanted to book with her anyway and told her he wanted to focus on his groin, glutes and lower abdominals. She says the massage took place in a theater room, and that at one point Watson exposed his penis and moved it to her hand. The lawsuit says Watson told her, “I hope you do not mind if we continue the massage like this.” The woman says she started stuttering and said “I do not know. I do not know,” before ending the massage. The plaintiff says she called her mother and best friend that day to tell them what happened, and that Watson texted her the same day asking if she was OK.
June 2, 2020, at a spa in Houston. The plaintiff has been in the massage business about 11 years and is a licensed therapist who routinely works with pro athletes. She says Watson contacted her via Instagram and later by phone, telling her he makes “a lot of massage therapists uncomfortable and it’s really hard for me to find someone who will meet my needs.” During the appointment, the woman says, Watson continually tried to remove towels and exposed his penis multiple times and moved “in such a way to make his penis touch Plaintiff.” The lawsuit says Watson tried to schedule future appointments but was ignored or declined.
June 2020 and Aug. 17, 2020, at a hotel and later a spa in Houston. The plaintiff, who offers bodywork and stretch therapy classes, markets her business through Instagram. She said she initially did not know who Watson was when he contacted her through the manager at a spa where she worked. She met him at a hotel where he was staying, the lawsuit says. She says Watson groped her buttocks and vagina, and she slapped him. She says he later touched her hand with his penis. On Aug. 17, she says, Watson reached out on Instagram, and she didn’t realize the connection to her earlier client until he arrived. The lawsuit says Watson apologized for his earlier behavior but during the appointment exposed himself, forced the woman’s mouth onto his penis and masturbated in front of her.
July 2020 at the plaintiff’s house in Houston. The plaintiff offered Watson a teeth whitening and sauna detox when he originally reached out via Instagram for a massage. Later, by telephone, Watson asked about Swedish massage, and she said she would try to learn it before his appointment, according to the lawsuit. During the appointment, the woman says, Watson lay naked on his stomach and told her to massage the area underneath his genitals and anus before flipping onto his back. The lawsuit states that as the plaintiff massaged his groin, Watson ejaculated on her face and body. She says he then took her hand and had it touch his penis. The woman called a friend later that day to say what had happened because, she says, she was in shock.
July 15, 2020 at a home in Beverly Hills, Calif. The plaintiff, a licensed massage therapist, says Watson contacted her on Instagram. He later gave her an address to a house in Beverly Hills where she was to meet him, the lawsuit says. When she arrived, she says, she was led to a room where Watson locked the door. The plaintiff says she took out mace, and Watson laughed but didn’t say anything. When the massage started, the lawsuit states, Watson asked her to massage his glutes and pointed to his anus, and the plaintiff refused. When Watson flipped over, he had an erection covered by a towel, which he removed, the plaintiff says. She says Watson grabbed her hands and moved them toward his genitals and forced her hands onto his penis. Afterward, she says, he told her, “I will not have you sign a NDA but don’t ever talk about this.”
Aug. 2, 2020, at a hotel in Houston. The plaintiff offers various wellness services in homes, hotels and offices. Watson allegedly contacted her by Instagram to set up an appointment. The woman says that, during the session, Watson repeatedly asked if he could be naked and demanded she focus on the buttocks. The lawsuit alleges that Watson told the plaintiff he wanted her to touch his anus with her fingers. After the session, according to the lawsuit, Watson was naked in the room when the plaintiff returned from washing her hands and he allegedly asked if she did more than just professional work “for more money.” The woman says she immediately declined and told him to leave. Due to the incident, she left the profession, the lawsuit states.
Aug. 28, 2020, at the Houstonian Hotel. The plaintiff has owned a massage therapy business in Atlanta since 2019. She says Watson contacted her via Instagram and flew her to Houston for his appointment. The woman says Watson tried to get her to touch his genitals and exposed himself. She said she ended the massage and Watson grabbed her hand and arm and said, ‘It is OK. It is OK.’ She said she pulled away. When Watson went to shower, she says, she left for the airport and did not respond to later requests from Watson.
Several encounters between Sept. 9, 2020, and October 2020 at a spa in Houston. The plaintiff, a licensed esthetician of nine years, offers back treatments and body scrubs. In one session, the lawsuit says, Watson asked the woman “what she would do about his erection.” She told him his behavior was inappropriate, the lawsuit says. In an October session, she says, Watson tried to put his penis in the plaintiff’s hand so she would touch it and moved his body so his penis would touch her hand. She says he insisted she focus on his groin, complained she was wearing too many clothes and tried to kiss her. The woman says she cut the second session short and Watson left.
Sept. 24, 2020, at a rented room in a Houston salon. The plaintiff, who owns her own fitness company and offers body conditioning and wellness therapy, says Watson contacted her on Instagram. She said Watson asked if it was OK if he got naked and “if he got aroused.” Later, she says, he moved his body to have his penis touch her hand. She said she moved away and Watson then ejaculated. The lawsuit says the woman “felt violated and disgusted” and immediately stopped the session.
Two sessions — Oct. 19 and around Nov. 2, 2020 — at the plaintiff’s office in Houston. The woman owns a bodywork and stretch therapy company and had been open around six months. She said Watson contacted her on Instagram. In the first session, she says, Watson wanted her to work on his inner thighs. She said she doesn’t “do that kind of work,” but she did after he insisted, according to the lawsuit. During the second session, Watson kissed the plaintiff when he arrived, she says. She was shocked and left the office quickly to compose herself, and when she returned he exposed himself, the lawsuit says. Later, she says, Watson asked her to work on his buttocks and penis area but she declined. The lawsuit says he moved in a way to have his penis touch her hand and offered to pay extra if she worked on his buttocks and penis. She says when she declined, Watson got upset and left.
Oct. 8, 2020 at a spa in Houston. The plaintiff says she had never given a massage at this spa before, and her boss had assigned her to Watson, whom she said might require a non-disclosure agreement to be signed. She did not sign an NDA. When the massage began, the plaintiff says, she started massaging Watson’s lower legs, as her boss instructed. Watson later turned over and exposed his penis, the lawsuit states, and the woman continued massaging his inner thigh, lower stomach and sides as he instructed. Because his penis was exposed, the woman says, she had to brush against it during the massage. The suit says Watson told her not to be afraid to touch him, and the plaintiff responded that she was not paid to do that. She says he told her that’s what he paid for, and that he left, paying only a third of what he was supposed to pay her.
Dec. 28, 2020, at a Houston office building. The woman, a licensed massage therapist since 2018, says Watson contacted her through Instagram. During the session, she says, Watson instructed her to slide her hands across his genitals. The woman says she started shaking and felt intimidated and threatened. The lawsuit says that he forced the woman to have oral sex and that she blacked out for a few minutes from fear. She says Watson then got dressed and left.
Jan. 21, 2021, in Houston. The plaintiff, a licensed massage therapist who owns her own business in Houston, says Watson contacted her on Instagram. As the massage started, she says, Watson asked if he could remove draping because he gets hot. The woman says she told Watson that he would have to remain partially covered and that the massage was strictly professional. The lawsuit says he exposed his erect penis and caused it to touch her hand.
March 5, 2021, at a massage therapy business in Sandy Springs, Georgia. The plaintiff is a licensed massage therapist who owns her own business. She says Watson contacted her on Instagram about a $55 discount massage she was offering. During the massage, she says, Watson made her uncomfortable and directed her to his groin area. She refused, and Watson exposed himself and put his penis on her hand, the lawsuit says. She says she was shocked and moved away, and Watson dressed and left.
Former Denver Broncos TE Jake Butt announces retirement from football
Jake Butt, the once-promising tight end whose football career was waylaid by six knee operations, announced his retirement from the NFL on Thursday, saying he could no longer hide the fact that he’d lost his passion for the game he loves.
“Football gave me some of the best times of my life,” Butt wrote in a social media post announcing his decision to step away. “Ironically, it also gave me some of my toughest times, which turned out to be the most important. The adversity that I faced in my career gave me some of the biggest opportunities to grow as a man.”
Butt “showed remarkable perseverance, dedication & mental toughness to overcome three ACL injuries as a player — an incredibly rare accomplishment,” tweeted Broncos chief communications officer Patrick Smyth. “His positive attitude & work-ethic thru adversity set a great example.”
Butt first tore an ACL during spring drills his sophomore season at Michigan and he tore the other one in his final game for the Wolverines in the Orange Bowl. The Broncos drafted him three months later, but he spent his rookie year on IR.
In 2018, he played in three games before suffering a third torn ACL, this time at practice, and in 2019 his comeback was interrupted by yet another operation to clean out a torn meniscus.
Last year, Butt joined Washington quarterback Alex Smith as one of the NFL’s biggest feel-good stories on cutdown day, overcoming his sixth knee operation to stand out among a deep group of Broncos tight ends featuring 2019 first-round pick Noah Fant and heralded rookie Albert Okwuegbunam.
But he was soon lost in the mix, playing in just five games with one start and catching two passes for 5 yards.
Once considered a possible vanguard to the heralded 2017 draft class of talented tight ends that featured O.J. Howard, Evan Engram, David Njoku and George Kittle, Butt finished his career with just 10 receptions for 90 yards and no touchdowns in eight games, four of them starts.
Still, his perseverance and tough luck made him a fan favorite and a locker room beacon. Quarterback Drew Lock declared last summer, “There’s nobody in our locker room that doesn’t want to see Jake Butt succeed.”
At Broncos training camp last year, Butt said he’d overcome some dark days and the desire to walk away from the game after his latest knee operation.
“Bad days are going to come and tough days are going to come, but you can’t quit,” he said at the time. “You just have to keep showing up.”
That desire no longer burns so hot.
“This may come off as impulsive,” Butt wrote in his farewell. “Some may wonder, ‘Why now?’ when I was so close. But over time I’ve lost the passion that I once had for this game. I’ve battled through this feeling for a while now, but I can no longer ignore it.
“I will always cherish and love this game. It has given me some of my best memories, highest highs, my strongest friendships and my best lessons. But it’s time for me to close this chapter and move on to a new one.”
What that is, he didn’t say.
Butt thanked all those who supported him in realizing his dream to play professional football and said he was “extremely lucky to have been led by such great coaches and to have shared the field with such amazing teammates.”
At long last, Butt said, he’s finally among football’s fortunate.
“I am one of the lucky ones,” he wrote, “who gets to step away healthy, on his own terms. And with a newfound excitement for this next chapter in my life.”
Highest-paid WR? Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers differ on amount to make that happen
They can’t agree on the definition of the term “highest-paid receiver in the NFL.”
Adams and his representatives believe Arizona’s DeAndre Hopkins currently holds that title at $27.25 million per year.
The way the Packers — and many teams around the NFL — view it is Hopkins’ average is closer to the $20 million per year mark. That’s because Hopkins’ deal with the Cardinals was an extension to his previous contract. He was on a five-year, $81 million deal. So while the new money — two years and $54.5 million — indeed averaged $27.25, there were three years remaining on his previous contract.
“I think there’s a little bit with that particular situation, it’s how you interpret what the highest receiver in the National Football League is getting paid, you know what I mean?” Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst said Thursday.
A day earlier, Adams said he would not settle for anything less than being the highest-paid wideout.
“Certainly, I agree with him that he’s definitely worth that,” Gutekunst said. “We believe that, as well. I think there might be just a little bit of difference in what we believe is the highest paid receiver and what he might. I’m not going to get into the details of that. Again, we value him. He’s such a great player. He’s a warrior when he goes out there. Obviously, we would like to figure something out and will continue to work on that as we go.”
Talks stalled between the two sides shortly before Adams reported for training camp on Tuesday. Adams, in the final year of a four-year, $58 million deal signed in 2017, is currently the NFL’s 15th-highest paid receiver at $14.5 million. The 28-year-old is coming off an All-Pro season and set a team record with 115 catches (for 1,374 yards) and led the NFL with 18 touchdown catches — all while missing nearly three full games.
“We had a lot of time to figure this thing out and we weren’t really able to make all a lot of progress, sadly,” Adams said.
“So when things aren’t as smooth as what they should be or as simple, I wish that thing was like the NBA, where you get a max contract if you’re that type of guy, and it’s simple. But apparently it’s not as simple as what it should be.”
While Adams said he was thrilled to have Aaron Rodgers back after the offseason uncertainty, he won’t take less money just to play with Rodgers next season — assuming there is a next season for Rodgers in Green Bay.
“Yeah, no, that’s not gonna happen,” Adams said. “You know, I don’t want to. It’s not about being a baby, but what other profession do you take less than what you have earned. That’s not how it goes.
“The fans may see it different in certain ways, and I’m sure there’s a lot of fans that see it the same way that myself, my family, my agent, and most of the league sees it. I’m not a baby, so I’m not I’m not going to not show up, and I’m not complaining about it. At the end of the day, I’m not poor right now, you know I’ll be OK to get through and go and try to win a Super Bowl again. And so that’s my main focus now, I mean, the offseason was working out and trying to come to an agreement, but we weren’t able to do that so now it’s kind of time to lock in.”
The Packers have made players the highest-paid at their position before. In November, David Bakhtiari became the highest-paid offensive lineman at $23 million a year. In August before that, Kenny Clark became the highest-paid nose tackle at $17.5 million per year.
San Francisco 49ers’ Nick Bosa says he’s on target for 2021 season opener
SANTA CLARA, Calif. — If all goes according to plan between now and Sept. 12, defensive end Nick Bosa will be on the field and ready to play against the Detroit Lions in the San Francisco 49ers‘ season opener.
Bosa, who spoke to Bay Area media for the first time since before suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee last September, left little doubt Thursday that, barring any unforeseen setbacks, he will be ready to go to start the 2021 season.
“I looked at the schedule, but I knew when it was an early injury [last year], for the most part, I would probably be ready to go for Week 1,” Bosa said. “And everything right now is trending towards that. So I’m hoping to ramp it up as I go and be ready to give it all I got Week 1.”
In the opening days of Niners’ training camp, Bosa has been working in individual drills but has been held out of one-on-one pass rush and team portions of practice. He arrived at camp weighing around 260 pounds, down from the 263-265 he played at in 2019, in hopes that he would be able to add a little bit more quickness upon his return. He said he’s “moving better than I ever have right now.”
Bosa won the 2019 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year award after posting 47 tackles, nine sacks, 16 tackles for loss and 60 quarterback pressures. A promising start to 2020 was derailed by the knee injury against the New York Jets in Week 2 and led to a long recovery process away from his team.
After knee surgery, Bosa spent much of his time with his brother Joey, his family and his girlfriend in Southern California and back home in Florida. The tedious rehabilitation and the absence of football left Bosa’s mind wandering at times.
“My mind did go to some dark places, especially when football’s a really big part of your life,” Bosa said. “And now it just makes you appreciate your family more.”
Bosa also said he has grappled with the decision on whether to get the COVID-19 vaccination. He arrived at his Thursday media session wearing a mask and is taking part in the NFL’s required protocols for unvaccinated players.
“I’m just evaluating everything right now,” Bosa said. “I haven’t made a decision quite yet. But following the protocols and see where it goes.”
As for when Bosa will take part in full practices, there is no firm timetable just yet. But he has left teammates and coaches impressed with where he’s at in the process.
“Nick takes care of himself and better than anyone I’ve ever been around,” coach Kyle Shanahan said. “The guy has got a one-track mind and it’s awesome. So, you knew he’d come in great. And now it’s just about, you’ve got to know how much time it’s been since the injury. Him moving and looking like the player is, isn’t an issue. It’s just about building it up the right way. … We’ll take our time with him and be smart.”
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