Attorney Tony Buzbee, who is representing up to 22 women who have filed lawsuits against Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson alleging acts of sexual assault and misconduct, raised eyes during a Wednesday interview with Mark Berman of Houston’s FOX 26 when he explained some of his clients who met with the NFL said they “did not feel like they were being respected” as it pertains to the league probe being run by NFL special counsel for investigations Lisa Friel.
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy responded to Buzbee’s comments via a statement sent to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk:
“The allegations are very concerning and the league immediately began investigating the matter under the NFL’s Personal Conduct Policy. The investigation includes gathering information, monitoring law enforcement developments and conducting interviews with relevant people willing to participate with counsel present.”
The statement continues:
“Throughout her decades-long career as the chief of the sex crimes unit in the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office and most recently as the NFL’s special counsel for investigations for the last six years, Lisa has earned a stellar reputation as a consummate professional who conducts investigations and interviews with compassion and fairness in an effort to determine the truth.”
Buzbee added on Wednesday that none of the plaintiffs are considering settling out of court and that between eight to 10 of his clients have spoken with the Houston Police Department. Watson has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing but could be banned from participating in at least a portion of the 2021 season through either the NFL’s personal conduct policy or the commissioner’s exempt list depending on the findings of the league investigation.
The 25-year-old currently faces no criminal charges.