Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

Richard Sherman a Super Bowl hero too? – TD Sports Debate p2


 

The Super Bowl is only a week away, so who do you root for? Richard Sherman has stolen the early show while Peyton Manning aims to play for immortality. All heroes here in the red-hot NFL sports debate. Dan Salem and Todd Salem tackle this topic in part two of this week’s TD Sports Debate. Two brothers from New York yell, scream and debate sports.

[Part one - Heroes and Villains]

 

TODD:

I think you misread this situation. Richard Sherman certainly had some villainous actions following the NFC Championship game win. The media could do nothing but run with it. Isn’t it likely though that Sherman wanted to play that role? The Seahawks know what everyone is going to make of Peyton Manning. This is, perhaps, his swan song. He just had his best regular season ever, which doubled as the greatest statistical season in league history. Now he’s attempting to win another Super Bowl to secure his legacy. Are people actually going to villainize that story? Get real.

So what would have happened had Sherman not done anything following the 49ers win? The media would have instead started to bring up the other stuff surrounding Seattle: the suspensions, all the Adderall and failed drug tests. The Seahawks would have been turned into the villains anyway, but for something worse.

Instead, Sherman got ahead of this thing, put himself on the line, rather hilariously I might add, and turned his team into the rough and tumble LOB! (LOB stands for Legion of Boom for the uninitiated, the nickname for Seattle’s secondary.)

Once people got past the “Is Richard Sherman a thug? vs. “Is calling Richard Sherman a thug racist?” argument for long enough to bring up how smart he is, the possibility revealed itself. This sounds like a movie heel turn, but couldn’t a smart guy plan out how he wanted a post-game news conference to play out? Or, if that sounds too calculating, could he have at least wanted to say something controversial to get his name and team in the news?

Of course, bringing up how smart Sherman is seemed to border on racism itself in my opinion.

If a white player had done the same exact thing following last week’s game, criticism would have come calling him a brute and a thug, etc. Then, another wave of people would have come to his defense, saying we don’t know the whole story or what happened between him and Michael Crabtree. And then, after the backlash to the backlash subsided, folks would have mentioned how perhaps this would light the fire underneath the Seattle Villains bandwagon.
At any point would analysts and experts have had to come out and defend how smart this guy was? Would that have ever happened? Race is always a tricky subject but, to me, it seemed borderline insulting to feel the need to bring up how smart Richard Sherman is.

 

DAN:

I agree with you completely, except for the fact that no one really knew much about Sherman before any of this went down. Considering he is the top corner in the NFL and his defensive unit has an amazing nickname, this is bad all around. Shame on you NFL for not marketing the Legion of Boom, in an age full of superhero movies and sick nicknames. Setting aside the fact that Sherman’s story wasn’t widely known, I agree that saying he is smart or well spoken assumes that people think he would otherwise not be. Very poor taste, whether it’s racially driven or not. For some it probably was, for others it was simply ignorance. Either way we will learn from this and the media will adapt.

This does beg the question, how does one mention that he is wildly intelligent without being racist? I mean the average person does not go to Stanford. That is noteworthy for any man or woman. There has to be a good way to say so without insulting the person for assuming they were the opposite, even if those words never left your mouth. I wish I had a solution, but that’s for some non sports related writer to figure out.

The bigger issue here is why do we need a villain for the Super Bowl? Yes, Richard Sherman acted like a villain, but I agree with him that he is not one. And perhaps you’d have been correct if he didn’t make waves with his postgame rant. The media may have painted Seattle as villains anyhow. But why? If we aren’t going to market the freaking “Legion of Boom” with its obvious superhero reference, then why do we need a hero and a villain? I’d love to see Peyton Manning win another Super Bowl and perhaps retire on top. Two years in a row with a hall of fame player retiring after winning the Super Bowl would be unprecedented. But I’d like to see Pete Carroll win a Super Bowl just as much. I’d like to see Seattle get a championship since its never happening in basketball or baseball.

I think we have a bunch of heroes in this game. Not least of which is John Elway. He retired after winning a Super Bowl with the Broncos (two actually) and now has put Peyton Manning in a position to do the same exact thing. I don’t know what you call this, serendipity or something, but its pretty damn cool if you ask me. Maybe the only real villain of this game is the weather, or the annoying sports pundits who won’t shut up about it.

 

[If you missed Part one - Heroes and Villains]

[Part three - Apparently there's weather]

[Part four - Super Bowl X-factors]

 

 

Tags: Denver Broncos John Elway NFL Nfl Playoffs Peyton Manning Richard Sherman Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl Super Bowl XLVIII