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Deshaun Watson Contract Details Out: NFL World Reacts

Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson

BEREA, OHIO - MARCH 25: Quarterback Deshaun Watson #4 of the Cleveland Browns is introduced by general manager Andrew Berry (L) and head coach Kevin Stefanski during a press conference at CrossCountry Mortgage Campus on March 25, 2022 in Berea, Ohio. (Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images)

The contract details for quarterback Deshaun Watson are out. And they tell a pretty obvious story of what the Cleveland Browns are expecting this coming year.

ESPN's Field Yates revealed on Wednesday that Watson's new contract includes a $44.965 million signing bonus. The salary breakdown is more interesting though.

Watson is due to make just $1.035 million in 2022. Clearly the Browns are anticipating that Watson will miss time this year as a result of the ongoing litigation against him.

But Watson will make $46 million in each of the four following seasons. All told, Watson will make $230 million fully guaranteed.

NFL fans are largely disgusted with how the Browns made this contract. Everyone agrees that the Browns know that Watson is going to be suspended for conduct violations and designed his contract specifically to mitigate their risk.

We can debate the morality of the Cleveland Browns trading for Deshaun Watson forever. But the Browns have made their priorities clear: They want to win.

To that end, they mortgaged the future (and effectively betrayed one of the players who helped get them out of the doldrums) in order to upgrade at quarterback.

Simply put, if Watson leads the Browns to the Super Bowl for the first time ever, it will have been worth it. If he doesn't, the Browns will be one of the NFL's most despised franchises for years to come.

It's a big gamble. Will it pay off?