The San Francisco 49ers and Richard Sherman agreed to a heavily incentivized three-year contract. Among other things, Sherman says playing in the NFC West and having the opportunity to face his former team, the Seattle Seahawks, twice per season played a role in his free-agency decision.
49ers General Manager John Lynch and Sherman shared intimate details of their negotiations to Peter King of The MMQB.
One of my favorite nuggets from the piece was:
“We’re on the 1-yard line here!” 49ers GM John Lynch said late Saturday afternoon to the free-agent corner he was recruiting, Richard Sherman. “We can do this! We can put this in the end zone!”
Sherman smiled. “I’ve been at the 1-yard line before,” he said, “and it didn’t go so well.”
Lynch said: “I promise you, we won’t throw it this time.”
Even though Sherman was released by Seattle, some Seahawks fans are upset at him for signing with their arch-rivals:
“We had something no other team could offer … the ability to play Seattle twice a year,” Lynch said.
Sherman didn’t dispute that aspect of the 49ers’ appeal.
“I’m vengeful in that way,” he said.
He added, “I love the fan base to death, and I loved playing there. It was such a great opportunity. I helped the organization get to a great place and stay there. But now it’s like I abandoned them. People are out there burning my jersey. Come on. I’m not the one who let me go. They let me go. I didn’t abandon anybody.”
Now would also be a good time to bring up the Sherman/ Russell Wilson beef angle. Could this have possibly played a role in him signing in San Francisco as well?
The Niners are making moves to become contenders again and are looking for a big comeback year from Sherman. Sherman represented himself in the negotiations, and is betting on himself with this deal.
As Mike Florio reported, the deal includes $5 million before training camp in the form of a $3 million signing bonus and a $2 million roster bonus on the first day of camp. His base salary in 2018 is $2 million. Sherman will need to be an All-Pro again to cash out on the full $39 million.
Does Sherman get booed upon his return to CenturyLink Field? Did his beef with Russell Wilson have anything to do with him signing with the Niners? Now that Sherman is out of Seattle, it will be really interesting to see if he spills more about his true thoughts on Russell Wilson.