The NFL is also investigating the accusations and if Watson is found to have violated league rules, he likely would be suspended.
“I felt it was the right move for our organization as we head into the new league year focused on building our roster for the 2022 season,” Caserio said in a statement.
The Texans said they were sending Watson and a fifth-round pick in 2024 to the Browns for a first-round pick in the next three drafts, a 2023 third-round pick and a 2024 fourth-round selection.
“Any transaction would have no effect on the NFL’s ongoing and comprehensive investigation of the serious allegations against Deshaun Watson,” NFL spokesperson Brian McCarthy said in a statement. “Nor would it affect his status under the Collective Bargaining Agreement and the Personal Conduct Policy.
“If the league’s investigation determines that Watson violated the Personal Conduct Policy, discipline may be imposed pursuant to the policy and the CBA.”
Texans Chief Executive Officer Cal McNair said the team made a decision that is best in both the short and long term.
“We’re confident in our plan to build a championship program that can sustain success and our entire organization is excited to move forward together,” he said.
CNN has reached out to the Browns for comment.
After a grand jury declined to indict Watson, the quarterback told reporters in Houston that he was ready to get back on the field.
Watson is an NFL superstar, having been selected for three Pro Bowls in his five seasons with the Houston Texans. He did not play during the 2021 season because of investigations into the allegations.