Nike and Beats by Dre are two brands that have distanced themselves from Houston Texan quarterback Deshaun Watson in 22 civil lawsuits against the 25-year-old star caller alleging sexual assault and misconduct.
According to Pro Football Talk’s Josh Alper, Reliant Energy has confirmed that Watson will no longer be used as a brand ambassador. NRG Energy currently owns the naming rights for the Houston stadium and is the parent company of Reliant.
“Reliant is aware that civil suits and criminal investigations are pending against Deshaun Watson, the Houston Texans quarterback,” Alper said in a statement. “Our relationship with Watson as a brand ambassador should end before these allegations this spring, and there are no plans for future engagements or contracts with him. We take allegations of this nature very seriously. Regarding the legal process, we have no further comment this matter. ”
At least two victims are believed to have spoken to the Houston Police Department, and the HPD announced last Friday that it had opened an investigation into the quarterback after a complainant filed a report. Two women revealed their identities during a press conference on Tuesday examining their allegations, and Brian McCarthy, vice president of communications for the NFL, replied that the league would continue to “monitor closely all developments on the matter,” which with related to the allegations he described as “deeply disturbing”.
Watson has so far denied any wrongdoing but could end up on the commissioner’s exception list and face ultimately fines and suspension of the NFL’s personal conduct policy regardless of the outcome of civil or criminal cases.