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Browns' Watson says he's back to throwing full speed after shoulder surgery

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BEREA, Ohio (AP) — Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson said he's following a conservative plan as he recovers from major shoulder surgery, but that he's been able to throw at full speed.

Watson played in just six games in his second season with Cleveland before suffering a fracture to the glenoid bone in his throwing shoulder. The 28-year-old said his rehab has gone according to schedule and that there haven't been any setbacks.

He's been throwing pain free and without any issues.

“Everything is fluid motion, no hinging,” Watson said Tuesday, raising his arm to demonstrate. ”When I'm throwing, everything is fluid and motion is really good. The velocity and the strength is really good."

While giving a positive medical report, Watson didn't have a timetable for when he'll be 100%.

“It can be sooner than later, it can be later than sooner,” he said.

Also, Watson isn't sure if he'll practice this spring and pushed any decisions about him playing in preseason games this summer off on Browns general manager Andrew Berry and coach Kevin Stefanski.

Watson reported to the team's training facility on Monday for the start of the voluntary offseason program. Per NFL rules, the team is limited to individual workouts and class room sessions.

Watson has been abiding by the advice he's gotten from Dr. Neal ElAttrache, the renowned sports orthopedist who did his surgery in November. ElAttrache has urged Watson to take it slow, which isn't always easy for the QB.

“Naturally for myself, I try to do a little bit more,” he said. “But (Browns head trainer) Joe (Sheehan) and those guys are keeping me tamed and making sure that I’m just doing exactly what the program says. If it’s eight reps, then do eight reps. Don’t try to do too much.”

Watson said a decision on whether he participates in OTAs next month hasn't been made.

“We got to see how these next couple of weeks go,” Watson said. ”Dr. ElAttrache wants to be a little bit more conservative just because it was a joint. So he wants to really make sure that we’re not doing too much and other experts that was a part of it said the same thing.

“You want to be a little bit more conservative this summer and get ready for training camp, that’s when there’s going to be a time where we can pick that up.”

Watson said ElAttrache was amazed he played as long as he did with the painful injury.

Despite hearing “clicking sounds” in his shoulder, Watson played the second half against Baltimore on Nov. 12 — he completed all 14 passes after halftime in the comeback win — before an MRI following the game revealed the fracture.

Watson said it was possible he broke the bone as early as Sept. 24. He was in and out of the lineup for several weeks following that game against Tennessee with shoulder issues.

The Browns signed Watson to a fully guaranteed $230 million contract in 2022 after trading three first-round draft picks and other selections to the Houston Texans for the three-time Pro Bowler.

Watson served an 11-game league suspension in 2023 following sexual abuse and harassment allegations made against him by two dozen massage therapists in Texas.



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