The mystery surrounding what’s going to happen with Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson has only intensified in recent days. With the NFL trade deadline coming up on November 2, it’s now or never for the NFL teams that would be interested in acquiring the controversial quarterback, regardless of his off-field sexual assault allegations.

Actually, it appears that it’s now or never for only one NFL team as, according to Ian Rapoport, the Carolina Panthers are pulling out of the running for Watson.

The big reason appears to be that Watson has only waived his no-trade clause for the Miami Dolphins, which appear to be his preferred destination.

Previously, it had been reported by John McClain of the Houston Chronicle that Watson also chose not to waive his no-trade for the Philadelphia Eagles, who had been rumored as a possible trade partner as well.

And so, if Watson is going to find a new home this season, it will almost certainly be in Miami. However, it’s also very possible that he stays put in Houston, too. The two sides have apparently agreed to the numbers involved but, per Tyler Sullivan at CBS Sports, the Dolphins still have concerns about the legal aspects of Watson’s allegations.

According to John McClain of the Houston Chronicle, Dolphins owner Stephen Ross has approved the trade but he wants Watson’s legal issues to be resolved before it happens. The problem is that the only way that could happen is if Watson settles all 22 civil suits against him before November 2, which also means admitting guilt, something he has been opposed to.

Ross is also apparently looking for assurances from NFL commissioner Roger Goodell about what kind of punishments, if any, Watson will face from the league. Goodell told reporters this week that since the police are still investigating, the league is waiting to see what all of the “facts” are before making a final judgment of its own.

[John McClain, Ian Rapoport]

About Sean Keeley

Sean Keeley is the creator of the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and author of 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and many other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle. Send tips/comments/complaints to sean@thecomeback.com.