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Jobe's Brownlow Medal return 'devastating'

AAP logoAAP 11/11/2016

WHAT'S BEING SAID ABOUT JOBE WATSON'S BROWNLOW MEDAL DECISION:

* "It has been incredibly distressing for me to have people question my integrity and infer an intention to act against the spirit of the game - a spirit that is intrinsically a part of who I am." - Jobe Watson confirms in a statement he will hand back his 2012 Brownlow medal

* "In Jobe's own words, he is honouring the history of the medal and putting the interests of the game first, and this is an honourable position for him to have taken." - AFL chief Gillon McLachlan

* "Jobe has remained unassailably dignified under the most-extraordinary pressure over the past four years. The club takes responsibility for placing Jobe in this position and unreservedly apologises to him and his family." - Essendon chairman Lindsay Tanner

* "Jobe's a very unselfish man. I have an enormous amount of respect for the guy and we continue to move forward from here." - Bombers teammate Dyson Heppell

* "I'm not here to talk about that." - Sam Mitchell avoids questions on whether he and joint runner-up Trent Cotchin could be awarded the 2012 Brownlow in light of Watson's decision

* "It's devastating really for Jobe. It's great that he's done it, in a way, but I feel really sorry for him." - Former teammate and 2008 Brownlow medallist Adam Cooney on SEN Radio

* "He's made the honourable decision to hand it back. But it's another big hit in this sorry affair for a guy who puts his heart and soul into his career and was let down by individuals at the football club." - Essendon great Matthew Lloyd on 3AW radio

* "Jobe has spoken of his values driving his decision and, in all of the AFLPA's dealings with him, he has proven to be a man of great integrity." - AFL Players' Association chief Paul Marsh

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