The Cleveland Browns must prepare to play without Deshaun Watson.
Having faced multiple allegations of sexual assault and harassment, the newly acquired quarterback will likely face a suspension to start the season. The NFL is reportedly seeking a season-long ban during the ongoing disciplinary hearing.
Per News 5 Cleveland's Camryn Justice, running back Kareem Hunt discussed the possibility of playing without Watson.
"I don't know too much about the situation," Hunt said. "If he misses it, it's the next man up mentality. I'm gonna be ready to play, I know the rest of the teams still gonna be ready to play—We didn't have Deshaun last year or the years before."
In 2018, the Kansas City Chiefs released Hunt after a video emerged of him assaulting a woman in a hotel lobby. He later told ESPN's Lisa Salters he was "extremely embarrassed" and said he "deserves forgiveness."
The NFL suspended Hunt for eight games after the Browns signed him in 2019.
Three years later, Cleveland ignored disturbing allegations to acquire Watson from the Houston Texas and make him the highest-paid player in NFL history. The team even arranged his contract so that he'll sacrifice no more than this season's $1.035 million base salary if suspended the entire season.
In the process, the Browns likely burned a bridge with Baker Mayfield. The former No. 1 pick is unlikely to stick around to potentially fill in for Watson this season.
Barring another move, Jacoby Brissett will likely begin 2022 as Cleveland's starting quarterback.