NFL appoints Peter Harvey to hear Deshaun Watson appeal

Former New Jersey Attorney General Peter Harvey will hear the NFL’s appeal of Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson‘s six-game suspension for violating the league’s Personal Conduct Policy.

PFT has confirmed that the NFL informed teams that Commissioner Roger Goodell has selected Harvey to hear the appeal. Goodell could have heard the appeal himself, but, as PFT reported earlier on Thursday, he opted not to go that route.

Harvey has close ties to the league, however. He serves on the NFL’s diversity advisory committee and he was part of the advisory committee that worked with the league ahead of Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott‘s six-game suspension in 2017. Harvey also served as the arbitrator for former Washington General Manager Scot McCloughan’s grievance against the team. Harvey ruled in favor of the team.

Harvey is currently a partner at Patterson Belknapp and his bio at the firm’s website notes his work to strengthen New Jersey’s sexual assault response while he was the state’s Attorney General.

The ties to the NFL and his previous work as a prosecutor could be signs that Harvey will be amenable to the league’s desire to see Watson suspended for more than six games once he issues his ruling on the matter.

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