There were plenty of verbal fireworks during Richard Sherman’s press conference Tuesday, including a spat between the cornerback and 710 ESPN Seattle host Jim Moore. But, from Mike Salk’s perspective, the more important beef is the one apparently transpiring between Sherman and offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell.
“Richard Sherman tripled down,” Salk said on “Brock and Salk” Wednesday.
Sherman’s first public criticism of Bevell came during a sideline confrontation last week when the Seahawks were playing the Los Angeles Rams. Sherman shouted at coach Pete Carroll and Bevell, saying afterward that he was voicing his disapproval over the decision to throw the ball from the 1-yard line. Salk said he double downed on the objection afterward in the locker room by referencing the infamous ending to Super Bowl XLIX – when Seattle lost to New England after Russell Wilson was intercepted throwing from the 1-yard line. Then came the third straw at Tuesday’s news conference.
When asked if he would have a problem with an offensive player questioning defensive coordinator Kris Richard, he said: “If we had done something like a zero blitz in the Super Bowl and got bombed for a touchdown to lose the game, then I’m sure we’d be understandable of their reasoning.”
Salk said that quote was especially telling.
“I think that cut is more explosive than anything he said to Jim. That’s more explosive than anything he said after the game,” Salk said. “And by the way, I agree with him 100 percent, a thousand percent. I think the play call made at the end of the Super Bowl is absolutely the equivalent of what Richard Sherman is talking about – some ridiculous defensive play call that cost them the game. But it sure seems bizarre when that is coming out of the mouth of somebody on the team as opposed to somebody in the media or a fan or somebody else, and I’m not really sure what to take from that.”
Bevell, for his part, said that he and Sherman had a “really good conversation” and that they have both “moved on.” However, when asked if he thinks it’s ever a defensive player’s place to do what Sherman did, Bevell paused and said, “No, I don’t.”
Despite all this, of course, it was Tuesday’s other altercation that caught the national media’s attention. Specifically the back-and-forth between Sherman and Moore that started with this question from Moore: “What I don’t quite understand is Darrell Bevell is calling plays that he thinks are gonna work. And yet you feel like you maybe have a better handle of what should be called?”
Sherman: No, I just had a, we had a private experience, so we talked about it. But let me guess, you have a better play call. Let me guess, you have better experience.
Moore: No …
Sherman: Then you should probably, kinda, you know, stop.
“This is just a sort of day in the life of Jim Moore and Richard Sherman,” Salk said of the back-and-forth. “Jim is a little salty, Richard’s a little saltier. The world has put them on opposite sides of the coin, both personality-wise and occupation-wise. They are in a situation yesterday where they can’t help but be themselves.”
Had that been the end of it, there would have been no major press. But it, too, escalated, with Sherman telling Moore on his way out that, “I’ll ruin your career.”
Then, all of a sudden, that became a major story. It was something that former NFL quarterback Brock Huard said doesn’t look great from the outside.
“I love Richard, but I would hope we would all agree there’s one thing we can all agree: That once you start to place yourself ahead of others, it’s not very redeeming,” Huard said. “And that felt like (Sherman telling) Skip Bayless, “I’m better at life than you.” That felt like I can pull your card, that can feel like you’re just a nothing media guy.”
Despite multiple verbal altercations with members of the media, Salk said he is not worried about Sherman, even if he is starting to see some similarities between him and a former Seahawks star.
“To me, this is a mistake and not necessarily a sign that things are spiraling out of control for Richard Sherman, the Seahawks or anybody else,” he said. “But, man, I can sure understand how you might read it that way.
“This feels a lot like Marshawn Lynch. Try to get in Richard Sherman’s head, good luck. Try to get in Marshawn’s head, good luck. Why is Richard so quiet? Why is he so loud? Why is he so harass-able? Why is he so angry? Why is he so mad? What does this all mean? It’s all fascinating conversation.”