After the NFC Championship game Sunday night, Twitter was buzzing and it wasn’t because of the crazy fourth quarter.
Most of Sunday night and into Monday morning, Twitter was full of responses to Richard Sherman’s postgame interview.
“So Russell is a class act! Sherman on the other hand…. If he played baseball would get a high and tight fastball,” Detroit pitcher Justin Verlander tweeted.
Former NFL coach Tony Dungy expressed a similar reaction.
“Richard Sherman made the play to win it. But show a little class Richard,” Dungy tweeted.
At first, these tweets pretty much summed up how I felt. Then I came to my senses.
Do I like how Sherman acted during the interview? Not really. However, I don’t think football fans have any room to complain about how he acted.
As fans, we supposedly want more emotion from players and coaches. We complain every time a player is penalized for excessive celebration.
We claim to hate coach-speak and the never ending line of cliches players serve up every week.
Then, when a player shows a little emotion, we get on our high horses and complain because the player isn’t classy enough.
Sherman had just made a play to send his team to the Super Bowl and we wanted him to quietly and politely answer a few questions so we could pretend we had some kind of insight to what he was thinking.
Erin Andrews, who conducted the interview with Sherman, summed it up best.
“Richard Sherman gave a candid response seconds after an emotional game,” Andrews tweeted.
Sherman responded to critics in a column for Sports Illustrated’s MMQB.
“It was loud, it was in the moment, and it was just a small part of the person I am,” Sherman said.
“To those who would call me a thug or worse because I show passion on a football field – don’t judge a person’s character by what they do between the lines. Judge a man by what he does off the field, what he does for his community, what he does for his family,” Sherman added.
Maybe you like Bill Belichick and Nick Saban interviews, but I’ll take a Sherman outburst over carefully-calculated, robot-like answers every day of the week and twice on Sunday.