Richard Sherman Doesn’t Really Think The NFL Cares About Player Safety
Richard Sherman is not the type of player to hold his tongue. And although the Stanford graduate talks a lot of junk on the field, he wrote a very introspective article on concussions for the MMQB where he discusses his first concussion and how he feels about the NFL’s newly acquired concern for player safety.
Now you have receivers going up to catch passes and players are hitting them with shoulder pads and guys like Chancellor and Meriweather are still getting fined. Those used to be highlight hits. Now that there’s so much public ire, the NFL is trying to punish guys and say, Hey look, we care. It’s not hurting anybody but the players by making the game more dangerous. Defensive players are used to playing fast, but now they’re being forced to play with indecision, and indecision gets you hurt in this game.
Sherman did say that there are safety measures that he understands and supports like protecting quarterbacks from late hits, but overall he sees nothing wrong with the big hits that have traditionally been a part of the game.
He also notes that parents from higher income families that won’t allow their children to play football because of the risks, are only making it easier for those from poorer backgrounds get a shot, who he says makes up the majority of the top players anyway.
Sherman wrote a very candid piece from the players’ perspective and you can read it in its entirety here. And I agree with him. The NFL made a lot of money off the big hits it now penalizes players for and only seemed to “care” when the reality of player lawsuits and public disapproval threatened their pockets.