Sadly, it’s getting to the end of yet another football season, and as much as that reality hurts, conference championship weekend offered plenty of reasons for why America’s love affair with the sport is so great.
Among those reasons is Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, who made an outstanding play on San Francisco’s final drive, tipping a pass from 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick intended for wide receiver Michael Crabtree away and into the hands of teammate linebacker Malcolm Smith for a game-sealing interception.
Sherman then proceeded to deliver a very loud, rambunctious interview to FOX’s Erin Andrews during the postgame celebration on the field in Seattle.
“I’m the best corner in the game,” Sherman yelled, proceeding to claim that this is what happens when you put a receiver against him who can’t hang with his talent.
Sherman offered an explanation Monday on Peter King from SI’s Monday Morning Quarterback. He defended what he did, and addressed “those who would call me a thug or worse…” on social media.
But aren’t we missing the point here?
Sherman — who graduated from Stanford by the way — made one helluva play, his team is going to Super Bowl XLVIII, and the man was just passionately sharing his thoughts on what he did because he was upset with the way Crabtree handled the situation.
Crabtree shoved Sherman’s helmet away when he tried to talk to the wide receiver.
Where’s the shame in that?
Sherman is widely known as the best defensive back in the league, plays on the league’s top defense and backed up what he said. He has earned the right to talk trash, especially if Crabtree did — as Sherman claimed according to a report from The Seattle Times — attempt to start a fight with the defensive back last summer at a charity event in Arizona.
Crabtree offered his own rationale to what happened at the end of the game, saying Sherman “didn’t make any other plays in the game” aside from when he denied the receiver the chance to win the game for San Francisco.
In the NFL, players jaw at each other all the time — it’s part of the game. It’s part of why the fans love it. Arguably the best athletes in the world play the game, driven by competition and the utmost desire to win.
Sherman’s 30-second interview was just a tidbit of great television. Twitter exploded, and as Sherman mentions in his Monday Morning Quarterback piece, people fired racial slurs at the All-Pro.
The NFC Championship was a great game, played with what was clearly passion and determination by both sides. Sherman spoke his mind and you can choose whom to believe, either him or Crabtree, but you can’t deny what Sherman did to help his team win the game.
Because after all, isn’t it just a game?