RENTON – (Wire Service Report) – Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman once again took aim at the NFL on Thursday, levying criticism toward the league, officials and commissioner Roger Goodell. When asked why he thought television ratings were down this season, Sherman blamed the league for neutering the entertainment aspect of the game.
“Because the league isn’t fun anymore,” Sherman said. “Every other league, you see the players have a good time. It’s a game. This isn’t politics. This isn’t justice. This is entertainment. And they’re no longer allowing the players to entertain.
“They’re no longer allowing the players to show any kind of personality, any kind of uniqueness, any individuality. Because they want to control the product. They want to control the messaging, etc., etc.
“They say we’re trying to influence kids, and that’s their biggest thing. That’s their biggest ploy is you don’t want to be a bad influence to kids. You don’t want to be a bad role model. And I can agree with that. But in the same breath, you can’t say Budweiser is the official sponsor of the NFL, and we’re trying to influence kids. So there’s a ton of hypocrisy, but it doesn’t matter because we don’t control it.”
Among other criticisms, Sherman said he believes the NFL rulebook is too large, that “illegal contact” is impossible to officiate and Goodell has been a poor commissioner.
“He hasn’t done a great job and it’s obvious,” Sherman said. “For us to say he hasn’t done a great job is just beating a dead horse, honestly.”
Sherman said the league told Seattle that three separate plays had officiating errors that went against the Seahawks last week in a 25-20 loss to New Orleans.
“We probably lead the league in NFL apologies the next day,” Sherman said.
Saints receiver Willie Snead should have been called for a pair of offensive pass interference penalties. Flags were never thrown, and the result was two pass completions from Drew Brees to Brandin Cooks — one for a touchdown and one for a 20-yard gain on third down that allowed the Saints to bleed the clock late in the fourth quarter.
Additionally, a defensive holding call against DeShawn Shead was also incorrect, per Sherman. That play gave New Orleans a first down and extended a drive that eventually ended in a Saints field goal.