Sherman: No ban for Sterling if in NFL

Updated: May 8, 2014, 12:39 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Richard Sherman doesn't believe that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell would stand up to an owner the way his NBA counterpart, Adam Silver, did when he banned Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling for life for making racist comments.

Asked in an interview with Time Magazine whether he thought Goodell would take the same stance as Silver, who has been widely praised for his decision to rid the NBA of Sterling, Sherman said, "No, I don't."

Sherman Because we have an NFL team called the Redskins, I don't think the NFL really is as concerned as they show. The NFL is more of a bottom-line league. If it doesn't affect their bottom line, they're not as concerned.

-- Richard Sherman,
on the NFL's stance on racism

Sherman, who signed a $57.4 million contract extension Wednesday with the Seattle Seahawks that makes him the league's highest-paid cornerback, expanded on his comments by saying the league already dropped the ball on racial sensitivity with the way it's handled the debate about the Washington Redskins' name.

"Because we have an NFL team called the Redskins," Sherman said, "I don't think the NFL really is as concerned as they show. The NFL is more of a bottom-line league. If it doesn't affect their bottom line, they're not as concerned."

Sherman also said he was not surprised by Sterling's disparaging remarks about blacks and pointed to the criticism he endured following his nationally televised rant after Seattle beat the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC title game.

"I wasn't really shocked or anything because of what I saw after the incident after the NFC Championship Game," Sherman said. "You've got a lot of racial backlash, and a lot of racist comments that were uncalled for -- I can never see a time where racism is called for. So it didn't shock me as much as it would have had I not experienced that personally, had I not seen those things.

"It showed me that America still had some progress to make. On equality, and understanding that it doesn't matter what color you are, you treat people as people. And whether a good person or a bad person, you don't judge them off the color of their skin. You can know a person is a good person or a bad person by who they are, not by what they look like. In that situation, it just seems like a lot of people gave [Sterling] a lot of flak, well deserved, but you know -- I feel like a lot more people were surprised than they should have been.

"That's why a lot of people shy away from the conversation that I forced on us in January," Sherman said. "People want to it to be done, they want that uncomfortable truth to be over with, they want the racism to be done, they want to believe everything is great and hunky-dory. And it's not. There's a lot of racism still alive and still active. And it just forced America to rethink it once again, and to really, really understand that racism isn't gone. We have to actively push it out. And snuff it out."

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.


EDITORS' PICKS