Watson was an unexpected inactive after it seemed like he’d be able to give it a go against the Ravens with a shoulder injury. He tested out his shoulder pregame and made the decision to sit out.
The Browns are now heading into their early bye week, which comes at the right time with the quarterback banged up. Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said he believes Watson will be ready for their Week 6 matchup against the San Francisco 49ers.
“I do,” Stefanski said when asked if Watson would be ready to go after the bye week. “I think having the bye helps.”
Browns QB Deshaun Watson Made Decision to Sit Out
Watson had a brief conversation with Stefanski, offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt and general manager Andrew Berry on the field during warmups when the decision was made to sit out. Watson did not throw during the week, per Stefanski.
“We took it day by day,” Stefanski said. “He did not feel comfortable to be the player we need him to be. He was very disappointed and wanted to go badly but he did not feel that he could go.
“He was hopeful that he would feel good today. He didn’t. He knows his body. I trust him. He just didn’t feel like he could operate at enough of a level to play.”
There’s no tear or separation in his shoulder but Stefanski did not shoot down a report that there’s “fluid” in his shoulder, which was reported on the broadcast.
“I don’t know the specifics,” Stefanski said.
Browns Rookie Dorian Thompson-Robinson Struggles in Relief of Deshaun Watson
Rookie Dorian Thompson-Robinson got the starting nod for the Browns and looked like a fifth-round rookie against the Ravens’ strong defensive unit. He was 19 of 36 passing for 121 yards with three interceptions. He didn’t get any help from a run game that totaled 93 yards.
Thompson-Robinson was the star of the preseason for the Browns. His play earned him the No. 2 spot on the depth chart behind Watson, with the team trading away veteran Joshua Dobbs to the Arizona Cardinals. When Watson struggled for the first two weeks, some angsty fans clamored for the Browns to give the rookie a shot. However, it’s clear he needs more time to develop before being a viable option.
“We got outplayed, outcoached. Disappointed in that, but we got to own it,” Stefanski said. “We win together we lose together. We’re a 2-2 football team. We’re going to use the bye week to take a deep breath as a team and get ready for the long haul.”