Published: Tue, March 13, 2018
Sports | By Ivan Ross

Why more professional athletes may follow Richard Sherman's example

Why more professional athletes may follow Richard Sherman's example

The newest member of the San Francisco 49ers, cornerback Richard Sherman, has been a bitter rival in the eyes of the Niner Faithful for the past seven years. That led to Seattle's decision that he wasn't worth his $13 million salary for 2018.

During his seven years with the Seattle Seahawks, Sherman became regarded as one of the best corners in the game and now leads the league with 32 interceptions since entering the NFL as a fifth-round draft pick in the 2011 NFL Draft.

Sherman can push the value to $39 million, but only with incentives and bonuses that reflect a return to All-Pro form.

Before that happens, though, let's squeeze in one more mock draft. Which means that the cornerback, who turns 30 on March 30 and is coming off Achilles' surgery, will be extra-motivated twice a year when the two teams meet and by the fact that his three-year contract with the Niners is laden with incentives.

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That may also have been something the Seahawks wanted to avoid, undoubtedly preferring to negotiate their own longer-term deal with Sherman than merely matching what he had agreed to with the 49ers. "You're excited after the game". A three-year deal was finalized over the weekend including a physical in which medical personnel signed off on Sherman's surgically repaired Achilles.

According to Sherman, nearly immediately after the Seahawks released him on Friday, the 49ers got in touch with him and invited him to visit with the team.

Playing the Seahawks twice this season might give Sherman a taste of vengeance he craves. "I enjoyed the city of Seattle and the fans there".

Sherman's contract is very low-risk for the 49ers. It's anyone's guess what general manager John Schneider will do on draft day, but it doesn't hurt to speculate with the big day creeping up on us. That scheme is similar to the one Seattle has run for many years and though the Seahawks have become a bit more diverse defensively in recent years, it's still the foundation of what they've done. The 49ers are found a player who appears to be a franchise player at the position, and they're already seeing their team reap the benefits.

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Seattle Seahawks' Richard Sherman (25) eats turkey during a TV interview on the field after the San Francisco 49ers' lost 19-3 in their National Football League game against Seattle Seahawks at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., on Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014. None more so than veteran offensive lineman Joe Staley, who's faced up against Sherman in some heated battles in the past.

The numbers indicate maybe not, and also reveal why Seattle may have been willing to part with Sherman.

The Seahawks, amid this offseason's deconstruction, will be a shell of their former selves when they put a nine-game win streak on the line against the 49ers, a streak that began with that 2013 season's NFC Championship Game punctuated by Sherman's end-zone play.

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