Deshaun Watson to undergo season-ending shoulder surgery

Watson will miss the rest of the 2023 NFL season after suffering a broken bone in his shoulder

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Deshaun Watson’s 2023 season is over.

The Cleveland Browns’ starting quarterback will undergo season-ending surgery on a broken bone in his throwing shoulder, the team announced on Wednesday.

Watson sustained the right shoulder injury in the first half of the Browns’ comeback win over the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, according to the team. He finished the game, but an MRI on Monday revealed a displaced fracture to the glenoid. Additionally, imaging revealed a high left ankle sprain.

The Browns are placing Watson on season-ending injured reserve and said he is expected to be ready for the start of the 2024 season.

This is the third significant, season-ending injury for the Browns’ offense this year. Right tackle Jack Conklin suffered a torn ACL and MCL in his left knee in Week 1 and star running back Nick Chubb tore both the following week.

Cleveland sent three first-round picks, a third-round pick and two fourth-round picks to the Houston Texans to acquire Watson and a sixth-rounder in March 2022. The team then handed him an unprecedented, fully guaranteed contract for five years and $230 million. 

Watson received an 11-game suspension and was fined $5 million as part of a settlement between the NFL and NFL Players Association after more than two dozen women accused him of sexual misconduct during massage sessions. He made his Browns debut in Houston in Week 13 of the 2022 season and started their final six games as they missed the playoffs.

He played just six of the Browns’ games so far in 2023, throwing for 1,115 yards, seven touchdowns and four interceptions. The team went 5-1 in those games.

Dorian Thompson-Robinson is expected to step in as Watson’s replacement, Bleacher Report’s Jordan Schultz reported. Thompson-Robinson made one start this season and threw interceptions in a 28-3 loss to the Ravens in Week 4.

P.J. Walker, the other quarterback on the Browns’ roster, is 1-1 as the team’s starter this season and finished out a 39-38 victory against the Indianapolis Colts after Watson exited that contest.

The Browns are a half-game back of the Ravens atop a stacked AFC North, a division where all four teams are currently above .500. They will return to the field for a home game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, Nov. 19.

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