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In the wake of two new lawsuits being filed against Deshaun Watson on Tuesday, attorney Rusty Hardin, who represents Watson, has issued a statement that includes testimonials from 18 massage therapists about their experience working with the Houston Texans quarterback.
The press release notes that Hardin’s office “received dozens of unsolicited phone calls, letters, emails and text messages” from professional massage therapists who say their experience with Watson is “wholly inconsistent” with the accusations made against him in the lawsuits:
Per ESPN’s Sarah Barshop, there are now 21 lawsuits alleging Watson sexually assaulted or committed sexual misconduct toward massage therapists.
In a statement posted to Twitter on March 16, Watson denied any wrongdoing and vowed to clear his name:
A lawsuit filed Monday alleged that Watson “is deleting Instagram messages, and contacting those who [formerly] provided him massages, in an attempt to settle,” per Aaron Reiss of The Athletic.
Hardin issued a statement denying that accusation, noting Watson “has not deleted any messages since March 15, the day before the first lawsuit was filed.”
Barshop noted that one of the lawsuits filed on Tuesday states that Watson has “unsent” messages on Instagram and used “intermediaries” to contact women who previously gave him massages.
Texans general manager Nick Caserio told the team’s official podcast on Tuesday that the organization takes the allegations “very seriously” and intends to “let the legal process take care of itself.”
The NFL informed the Texans on March 18 it was investigating Watson under the league’s personal conduct policy.