Jan 212014
 

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Let’s take a break from the woeful Cowboys and turn our attention to the hottest topic in sports: the Richard Sherman rant.

Seattle Seahawks’ cornerback Richard Sherman made perhaps the play of the year in the NFL when he ended the 49ers’ furious comeback bid by tipping a Kaepernick pass to a teammate. Interception in the end zone. Game over.

Then Sherman created a firestorm.

Sherman followed up the play of the year with the interview of the year. He caught sideline reporter Erin Andrews completely by surprise when he launched this screaming tirade…

Giving Sherman the benefit of the doubt, one could say that he had just finished an emotionally-charged, physical game with history in the balance and the outburst was  the product of being amped up. But then, after having a cooling down period, he repeated his assault on Michael Crabtree, calling him a mediocre receiver.

So much for the adrenaline theory. As it turns out, Sherman is what we thought he was: A talented athlete with a big ego and a bigger mouth.

I find it hilarious that some defend him because he is so lucid and intelligent. First, you would think an intelligent, well-spoken man would be held to a higher standard, rather than a lower one. Second, what are you saying? That it is so rare to find a talented athlete who can string together a coherent sentence? Or, is it just NFL players? But aren’t they all the product of institutions of higher learning? Didn’t they go to college? Shouldn’t they naturally have a grasp of the English language and an idea of how to use it to communicate their feelings and thoughts?

Is Richard Sherman’s ability to speak and write really so rare? And is it an excuse for being a punk with a big mouth?

Maybe he is the best cornerback in the world. Here’s an idea, Richard: let other people conclude that and say it and you find a way to accept that praise with a touch of humility and class.

Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; A stranger, and not your own lips. Proverbs 27:2

If you think Sherman feels badly about the way he screamed at Erin Andrews in the most ungentlemanly fashion or the way he trash-talked Crabtree or throat-slashed Kaepernick, well, you haven’t read his column on Monday Morning Quarterback. So, here is a snippet for you:

I spent most of the game on an island: I was targeted only twice during the entire NFC Championship. The first produced a BS holding call against me; the second ended the game. Michael Crabtree stutter-stepped out of his break on first down and sprinted toward the end zone. I was in good position for a pick until he pushed me in the back. My interception became a tip and an interception for Malcolm Smith in the end zone.

Game over. The Seahawks are in the Super Bowl.

I ran over to Crabtree to shake his hand but he ignored me. I patted him, stuck out my hand and said, “Good game, good game.” That’s when he shoved my face, and that’s when I went off.

I threw a choking sign at 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Why? Because he decided he was going to try the guy he was avoiding all game, because, I don’t know, he’s probably not paying attention for the game-winning play. C’mon, you’re better than that.

Erin Andrews interviewed me after the game and I yelled what was obvious: If you put a subpar player across from a great one, most of the time you’re going to get one result. As far as Crabtree being a top-20 NFL receiver, you’d have a hard time making that argument to me. There are a lot of receivers playing good ball out there, and Josh Gordon needed 14 games to produce almost double what Crabtree can do in a full season. And Gordon had Brandon Weeden, Brian Hoyer and Jason Campbell playing quarterback.

So, while he touts himself as the best in the business and Crabtree as mediocre, he takes a potshot at Weeden, Hoyer, and Campbell. What did they ever do to him? Did they, too, disrespect him in the offseason?

Or, is he just a big-mouthed jerk?

Also, do you really believe that he was just going up to Crabtree after the game–a man he says he does not like, a man who disrespected him somehow in the offseason–to shake his hand and tell him “good game?” If you do believe this, I would like to discuss selling you a bridge.

Furthermore, his game-saving play was timely and awesome and all that, but it was aided by a mediocre quarterback (when it comes to the passing game) throwing an ill-advised pass into double coverage. It was also aided by the good fortune of the trailing linebacker, who really made the play of the game by catching the tipped ball. Otherwise, it is just a broken up pass and maybe Kaepernick tucks the ball and runs it into the end zone on the next play. Who knows?

At any rate, Sherman and his oversized ego will get a chance to put up or shut up when he faces one of the greatest NFL players to ever don a uniform.

Of course, Peyton Manning has never said he was the greatest anything.

And isn’t Manning also lucid and intelligent and well-spoken?

How can this be? I thought…

Maybe it has nothing to do with lucidity or intelligence after all. Maybe it is just class versus crass, humility versus foolish pride.

I, for one, will be cheering for class and humility come Super Bowl Sunday.