Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman took vehement offense to Arizona coach Bruce Arians' vehement protest about the tactics Seattle used Sunday to try to block Cardinals' field goals.
Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman doesn’t want to hear Arizona coach Bruce Arians’ protests about the Seahawks’ field goal blocking schemes Sunday.
Concluding a long retort to Arians’ complaints about Seattle’s tactics, Sherman — dressed at the time as Harry Potter — said, “Your rhetoric is denied.”
To recap what happened, Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner twice leaped over snapper Aaron Brewer during field goal attempts in Sunday’s 6-6 tie at Arizona. The first time, Wagner blocked a a 39-yard field goal by Arizona’s Chandler Catanzaro in the second quarter. The second time, Wagner didn’t get the block, but Catanzaro missed a 24-yarder in overtime that could have won the game. On that play, Sherman also came hard off the right edge on a kick that clanged off the left upright.
“I felt like I would have got it if he could have kicked it right,” Sherman said. “If he would have kicked it straight I would have blocked it. Or Bobby might have blocked it as well again.”
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Arians on Sunday said he thought Wagner illegally made contact with Brewer and that “we’ll get some kind of explanation (from the NFL) that’s all bull…. like normal.” Then this week, Arians said the plays are “bad for football” and should be illegal.
Asked initially if he thought his rush or that of Wagner’s contributed to Catanzaro’s miss, Sherman replied: “Bobby was probably in his head. You jump over the line and block a kick like that, yeah, you’re going to be in his head. You just walked over the line. That’s probably as intimidating as you can get. We knew their cadence.
“I heard somebody saying that they were arguing or complaining. We can’t do that (complain) because it’s one of our rules of the program. We can’t indulge in complaining or whining about a call. But it was a legal play. Ever year there’s something else they’re trying to get against the defense. Now you’re saying we can’t jump over your snapper because you made your cadence so predictable. You made your snapper keep his head down. And now you want to change the rule again because you got your kicked block. That’s unfortunate.”
Told Arians had said it’s bad for football, Sherman replied: “It’s bad for his team. If he means it’s bad for his team, it’s bad for football, I can see that. They have a predictable cadence, and it will happen to them again if they keep doing it the same way. Now, it makes you compare. So our pick routes when they run pick routes. Pick routes are bad for football. Throwing the ball to a receiver while your linemen are 10 yards down the field is bad for football. But they do it. There are a lot of plays that are bad for football that I’m sure he has yet to acknowledge.”
Told that Arians said it would make the snapper pick up his head and maybe get kicked in the face, Sherman said: “No, that sounds foolhardy. No long snapper is going to snap the ball and get his head kicked. By the time he snaps the ball, he’s over them. If you watch that play, by the time the ball is through his legs and he would have time to look up, Bobby’s in the backfield. That rhetoric is denied.”
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll also defended the strategy, saying the Seahawks followed the rules and had alerted the officials ahead of time.
“That’s not an illegal play,” Carroll said. “It’s not. We talked to the guys and it’s not. He (Arians) has opinion on how he would like that to go, but it’s not an illegal play.”
Carroll said it would be an illegal play if Wagner had landed on Brewer, but said that didn’t happen.
“It is (illegal) when you land on people and you jump off and you catapult and all that,” Carroll said. “That’s why the rule is as it is. If you make it cleanly than it’s very safe, and that’s what Bobby was able to do.”
As Carroll noted, Seattle has tried this before, specifically when Kam Chancellor leapt over center to try to block a field goal against Carolina in the divisional playoffs following the 2014 season.
“We’ve done it before,” Carroll said. “We’ve been through this before. You have to do it right, you have to do it effectively. It takes an extraordinary athlete with great timing and the guts to pull it off. Bobby did all that.”
Wagner said after the game the Seahawks had noticed on tape that Brewer stays low throughout the sequence of the snap, which led the Seahawks to believe he could make the leap successfully.
“That was a game plan thing,” Carroll said. “That was something that we worked on over the week. He didn’t just come out of nowhere and do that. We don’t do that.”
Now to see if the Seahawks will try it again when Arizona comes to Seattle for the rematch on Christmas Eve.