Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Because Everyone Else Is Talking About Richard Sherman

You know who Richard Sherman is today.

You probably don't know the names of any other NFL cornerbacks that aren't on your team.
That, in and of itself, is enough. Sherman played the game the NFL and its media set up, and he won, and now they're mad about it.


Because the unwritten rules say that men like Sherman are supposed to brutalize one another for 3 hours on the field, are supposed to drug themselves numb to play with injuries that would send the rest of us to the hospital, are supposed to deliver highlight-reel shots on every play (never mind the human toll this would take on the bodies of the hitter and the hittee), and then are supposed to transform into the supporting cast of Downton Abbey for the post-game interview and mouth polite platitudes that we will then critique for not being "real".

Sherman is smarter than that. He's probably smarter than you and me, for that matter. He's probably richer than both of us put together, too, and has done more absolute good in this world through his charity work. And he understood very clearly that the way he gets to keep doing this is to get the spotlight on him in a way that most defensive backs never get it. And the way to do that was to break "the rules".

So now the spotlight's on him. The media knows his name. You know his name.
Ends justify means, not that the means were so terrible. He called an opponent "mediocre". Oh, the horrors; Jeeves, get me my smelling salts. Compare that to all the crap people are piling on Sherman, and I think you'd agree "mediocre" is comparatively mild - not to mention more syllables that most of the people frothing over Sherman's verbiage could manage under similar conditions.

So.

Get over it. Enjoy what the man can do on the field. Appreciate what he does off it. Admit you like someone providing answers that aren't the same Belichick-approved anodyne pap, especially since you were probably trash-talking Michael Crabtree yourself for holding out back in the day. And for God's sake stop the cheap moralizing over the racially tinged virgin/whore dichotomy where we demand our football players all be monsters on the field and patricians off it.
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