Seahawks CB Richard Sherman produced the first in a weekly video series for The Players Tribune, in which he attacks NFL management, insisting that the league “really could care less” about its players. In his initial effort, Sherman ranted about the manner in which league officials handled Carolina QB Cam Newton’s situation, when the reigning MVP was hit five times in the head by the Denver Broncos in Week 1.
“It’s hard to stress player safety in such a violent game because at the end of the day, ratings sell, people want to buy tickets, people are going to come to games regardless,” Sherman said. “Now does the league care when Cam Newton gets hit in the face five times and pretty much knocked out of the game?
“And they have all these spotters and people that watch the game specifically for these reasons, and you see (Newton) on his hands and knees shaking his head after he just took a shot to the face. And they’re saying they didn’t see any indications that he needed to come out of the game.
“If you take the reigning MVP out of a game in the last couple minutes with the game on the line, he’d be frustrated, the fans would be frustrated, but it would be in line with what (the NFL) said, (what the NFL) wants to see in terms of player safety. But you didn’t, because it would affect the ratings, because it would affect the game.
“They’re (the NFL) a bottom-line business. If you can increase their bottom line, then they’ll love you. They’ll do everything they can to put you out more, to market you, to make sure the fans buy your jersey. If you’re not making them money, they’re going to find somebody else.”
Sherman went on to say that the public gets confused by the relationship between the league and its players. He said the relationship doesn’t have to be amicable, and it’s not going to be.
“We really don’t have reason to trust the NFL, and I don’t think they mind, either way,” Sherman said. “At the end of the day, they’re going to do what they have to do to make their money, and as much as they can for the owners. And our union’s going to do what they can to protect the interests of the players and the rights of the players and help make them as much money as possible. That’s the way it’s always going to be.
“That’s the relationship we have with the league. They’re going to use us until our time is up, and then they’re going to find somebody else.”
Sherman is providing a weekly feature for The Players Tribune called “Tuesdays with Richard on Thursdays,” in which he offers a behind-the-scenes look at the All-Pro cornerback’s life on his off-day.