Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson and his legal team filed an official response Monday to allegations of sexual misconduct in 22 lawsuits filed against him, once again denying all claims and requesting a jury trial.
In a subsequent statement Monday afternoon, Watson's lawyer, Rusty Hardin, said: "The answer to whether we are saying that all 22 plaintiffs are lying about the allegations of sexual misconduct by Mr. Watson is a resounding yes."
The filing says the plaintiffs "are not victims of any type of misconduct," stating that many of them excluded relevant information about their interactions - in three cases failing to mention additional massage sessions with Watson - and several told other people they wanted to get money out of him.
According to the original answer, seven plaintiffs willingly worked or offered to work with the quarterback following the alleged incidents, three "lied about their alleged trauma and resulting harm," and eight "bragged about, praised, and were excited about massaging" the 25-year-old.
At least three of the plaintiffs messaged or attempted to contact Watson about future appointments or interactions after the alleged incidents, the filing asserted, with one woman "telling him ... that she wanted to go on dates with him."
"It was not until the plaintiffs saw an opportunity for a money grab that they changed their stories to convert therapy sessions they bragged about to friends and family to something much more nefarious," the original answer continued.
Watson is facing 22 lawsuits alleging sexual assault and inappropriate behavior. The Houston Police Department recently opened an investigation into the star passer after a complainant filed a criminal report against him.
"Only two of the 22 lawsuits allege forced sexual activity, which Mr. Watson vehemently denies," Hardin said in his statement.
The lawsuits allege that Watson exposed his penis to the women, touched them with his penis, forced them to kiss him, or in one case, forced one of the women to perform oral sex. Earlier in April, Hardin said "some sexual activity would have taken place" during some of the massages but insisted it was consensual.
Watson's team said at least four of the women have altered the social media accounts where they advertised their work since filing the lawsuits and one deleted her Instagram account. The plaintiffs were originally anonymous until two identified themselves in early April and a judge's order last week required the remainder of them to be identified. One of the women dropped her suit, citing concerns about privacy and security, but another woman subsequently filed a lawsuit, bringing the number back to 22.