Social media exploded on an alleged hypocrisy of the Browns franchise punishing a fan for throwing a plastic bottle at owner Jimmy Haslam, while trading for — and signing — ex-Houston quarterback Deshaun Watson for a fully-guaranteed, five-year $230 million deal.
Cleveland is reportedly planning to ban a fan, who has since been detained, for throwing a bottle at team owner Jimmy Haslam on Sunday when the Browns lost 31-30 to the New York Jets.
While Cleveland traded for Watson this off-season before giving him the fully guaranteed deal, despite 24 civil lawsuits accusing him of assault and sexual misconduct.
Watson has settled 23 of the 24 civil lawsuits brought by the women, accusing him of everything from indecent exposure to claims of forced oral sex.
Haslam was seen leaving the field towards the players tunnel when an object was thrown at the owner and hit him.
According to police documentation, reported by TMZJeffrey Miller was arrested for allegedly throwing the bottle at Haslam.
According to the report, police were able to identify Miller as the culprit before he left the stadium, although he “didn’t stop after authorities tried to detain him.”
Police eventually escorted Miller to a “police room” where he reportedly admitted the bottle was “never on the field.”
Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reported Cleveland Police Department has arrested a Rocky River, OH. man who ‘appeared intoxicated’ as he exited FirstEnergy Stadium.
Cleveland owner Jimmy Haslam was hit by a plastic bottle prior to his team’s loss in Week 2
He was booked steadfastly on three felony charges; disorderly conduct, assault and failure to comply with a lawful order.
Pelissero released a video showing the incident, in which Haslam appeared to be hit in the thigh area, and said Cleveland has “identified the spectator and plans to” ban the spectator.
Commenting on Tom Pelissero, one user wrote, “It sounds like the fan repented and should get free lifetime season tickets or $230 million. [sic] from haslam as that seems to be his thing and [sic] all.’
The Browns released a statement Tuesday which read: “The safety of fans, players and staff is our top priority in our facility and behavior that endangers others will not be tolerated.”
“Luckily no one was injured in this incident and by default we have worked with law enforcement agencies and are security video footage of the object being thrown into the right hands. We will not comment further on this.’
Twitter users took the opportunity to remind the Browns franchise of the lucrative contract they had given Watson.
The former Houston quarterback was given an 11-game ban and a $5 million fine last month.
Haslam (pictured left of center) was initially shocked before pointing at the alleged perpetrator
“I thought Jimmy Haslam was just about second chances and people to better themselves? If anything, he should be invited to join Haslam with the owners [sic] next week, where he will receive $230 million in season ticket vouchers for his apparent regret,” Mike Malone said.
Another user said the fan should be “banned for only 11 games imo,” boldly suggesting he should receive the same penalty as Watson.
“I maintain my innocence just because you know settlements, and things like that happen, doesn’t mean someone is guilty of anything,” Watson said in the press conference after his ban.
Social media reacted largely annoyed to Cleveland’s plan to ban the spectator
“I feel like someone has a chance to insist on their innocence and prove it, and we’ve proven that legally, and we’re just going to continue as individuals and as individuals.”
Despite his claims of innocence, Watson still expressed remorse, and when pressed for that apology by a reporter, the quarterback replied, “For everyone affected by this situation, there were a lot of people who were triggered.”
When asked if he’d apologized to prosecutors, Watson said he’s “apologised to all women, everyone affected, even yourself, everything.”
Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson was banned for 11 games after two dozen civil lawsuits in which he was charged with sexual assault when the NFLPA and NFL reached a settlement last month
Browns owner Haslam told reporters last month that Watson “had done everything we asked of him and more.
“And he’s the person, the leader that we expect from him and I think he understands where he is in his life, it’s a pivotal point, and we as an organization are going to do everything we can to help him, not just the be the best football player he can be, but more importantly to be the best person he can be,” said Haslam along with his wife, Dee, and Browns GM Andrew Berry.
As fate would have it, Watson will make his Browns debut against his former team in Houston, where Cleveland will face the Texans on December 4 – 700 days after his last regular season game.
Fan interactions with NFL staff were already a topic of conversation after week 2 after Kyler Murray was punched in the face following Arizona’s incredible comeback win over Las Vegas.
Murray gave front-row spectators a high-five at Allegiant Stadium after Byron Murphy Jr.’s game-ending fumble return on Sunday when a man appeared to reach out and punch Murray in the face with an open hand.
Video showed Murray appearing stunned, but unharmed, before attempting to identify the attacker from the usually happy crowd.
Officer Larry Hadfield, a Las Vegas police spokesman, confirmed that a battery complaint was filed at the stadium around 6:30 p.m. The report was not immediately available.
Watson will play football for the Cleveland Browns this season, but only after an 11-game suspension and being paid $5 million for sexual misconduct allegations, according to a settlement announced last month
Hadfield did not name Murray as the reporter, but confirmed the allegation was that “a spectator in the stadium punched a professional footballer”.
Hadfield said a suspect was not immediately identified and an investigation was underway.
Cardinals spokesman Mark Dalton declined to comment Monday. Although head coach Kliff Kingsbury spoke about it at his press conference and attacked the fan hard.
“I think that man is a jerk, whoever did it,” Kingsbury said Monday. “I hope they arrest him and he gets fired and he never gets to go to another game.”
Las Vegas police said Monday they were investigating allegations that a fan in the stands punched Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray during the celebration of Arizona’s 29-23 victory over the Raiders.