Richard Sherman loved attention when he was playing well, and now it seems he loves attention even when he’s not playing well.
“All the attention he’s gotten the last month or so, it’s been self-created,” Tacoma News Tribune Seahawks writer Gregg Bell said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “Honestly, I think he misses the attention. He’s not doing the weekly press conference that he’d been doing for five years. Now that he’s not doing it, I think he misses the attention and just says something that makes people notice him. He’s upset that he was challenged by a local writer (who said), ‘You’re a defensive player. What gave you the right to challenge offensive play calls during that Rams game when (you) blew up on the sidelines with Darrell Bevell?’ So ever since then, he’s been upset. He didn’t like the tenor of the questioning. I just think it’s a little bit of grand-standing. It is unusual for a guy last year who was voted Good Guy for Media Cooperation (by Seattle media).”
In many ways, Sherman has come off as a jerk in recent weeks, but Bell insists it’s a facade.
“He’s not a jerk, I don’t think,” Bell said. “He comes off that way. Yes, it looks very bad and it does put him in a jerk-ish light. I know him from years and years of covering him to know that he’s got an agenda for everything he does. Now he’s going to funnel a lot of what he’s going to say to his social media and his website and his Players’ Tribune weekly column. So he’s driving some of the traffic to that and taking it out of our hands to report what he says and let him do it first person line. That just may be the next evolution in Richard Sherman. He is co crafty that I think he knows what he’s doing. Last week he told us it was a privilege to get press conferences from him every week, (but) he’s not a jerk, per se.”
Well then what is he? Frustrated is a good guess.
“I think one thing is he’s been frustrated that this team’s Super Bowl window is closing,” Bell said. “We know in the NFL, unless you’re Tom Brady, the window closes eventually. It doesn’t stay open forever. I think that Sherman senses the defense is in its prime. Earl Thomas is already out for the year. They’re not going to be stars forever. Richard Sherman has two years left on his contract after this one. This, too, will end eventually. At the time he blew up on the sidelines against the Rams, the offense wasn’t holding its end of the bargain, as (has been the case) for most of the season because Russell Wilson’s been hurt, Marshawn Lynch has retired and they have no running game. Since then, the defense hasn’t played well. They gave up that game against Arizona. Had the defense done its job at the end of that Christmas Eve game against Arizona, the Seahawks have a bye this week and they’ve the No. 2 seed. It’s been one thing after another that has jeopardized this team’s Super Bowl window, which I think it closing. I think that’s a large part of Sherman’s frustration.”
Seattle (10-5-1) hosts Detroit (9-7) this Saturday at 8:15 p.m. ET.