Commentary: Sherman’s vow to get help just as admirable as his most important on-field plays

I spent most of last Wednesday in a really sad mood. To see Richard Sherman’s name in the headlines in an entirely different capacity than we normally do was jarring and disappointing.

This was Richard Sherman: the Seahawks hero. A potential future Hall of Famer, and more importantly, a standup role model who overcame the odds growing up in a bad neighborhood to excel and graduate from Stanford. The Sherman who continues to be a mentor to so many younger players in the game.

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To clarify: I wasn’t disappointed "in" Sherman, because without initially knowing all the facts, that would’ve been irresponsible. I was just sad to see him in jail. To see him in such a vulnerable and seemingly uncharacteristic situation. Which is why I was more relieved than anything to see his statement on Friday.

"I am deeply remorseful for my actions on Tuesday night. I behaved in a manner I am not proud of. I have been dealing with some personal challenges over the last several months, but that is not an excuse for how I acted. The importance of mental and emotional health is extremely real and I vow to get the help I need," Sherman said in a statement released on social media.

This was not an admission of guilt for anything he’s been charged with. It was admission that Richard Sherman, like the rest of us, is a human being.

To me at least, it was a reminder that we are all prone to mistakes and we are all susceptible to mental demons that threaten our well being. And a reminder that his being in the public eye doesn’t mean that we can automatically assume to know everything about that person or their ongoing struggles.

Listen, I’m not here to judge Richard Sherman. I’m also not here to condone any alleged actions. It’s an incredible relief no one Tuesday night was severely hurt.

I’m just here to support him and hope he gets the help that he needs.

Sherman has built up years of goodwill in this community, donating hundreds of thousands of dollars of goods and supplies through his Blanket Coverage Foundation – collateral worth considering before one jumps to conclusions about what might’ve happened on one particular night. And certainly before the all-too-common practice of tearing someone down just because they happen to be a high-profile celebrity.

We rooted for him as a Seahawk for seven amazing seasons. He’s still an important member of our community here in the Pacific Northwest. And from where I’m standing, this is when he could use our support the most.

His vow to get help should be just as admirable as "The Tip" in an NFC Championship Game. And I hope it goes a long way to getting him back to being the Richard Sherman we’ve all loved.


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