Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman is known to speak his mind, and on Wednesday the three-time All-Pro ripped the NFL’s injury report system, saying the rules are designed for gamblers.
Sherman was listed as questionable on the Seahawks’ injury report each of the last two weeks, but played every snap in the games. And this led to him going off about the league’s mandatory injury reports (teams have to submit the reports Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday before Sunday games).
Here are Sherman’s quotes claiming that injury reports are made “specifically to make sure the gamblers get their odds right” (via the Seattle Times):
“I guess from what I understand the rules is for the gamblers, for Vegas, to make sure the odds and everything are what they are supposed to be, which is apparently what the league is concerned about when talking about injuries and things like that,” Sherman said. “So maybe somebody should look into that, because I thought we weren’t a gambling league and we were against all those things. But our injury report is specifically to make sure the gamblers get their odds right.”
Richard Sherman rips the NFL on injury reporting rules: "Our injury report is specifically to make sure the gamblers get their odds right." pic.twitter.com/bTDlS5ZdeP
— Seattle Times Sports (@SeaTimesSports) September 20, 2017
Sherman also referred to the injury reports as “meaningless things on paper.”
Sherman said Seahawks training staff has to “put meaningless things on paper, even though you are going to play or whatever it is. They’ve got to put that ‘oh, his ankle is sore, his hip’s sore or he’s got a bruise on his hand.’ But guys are just tough — if you are going to play, what’s the point?”
Fantasy football participants certainly appreciate injury reports as they look to make their lineups each week, and when a reporter suggested this to Sherman, the cornerback said that the fantasy footballers are “almost as bad as the gamblers.”
“Fantasy football, oh my God,” he said. “They are almost as bad as the gamblers.”
The NFL quickly responded to Sherman’s comments in a statement on Wednesday:
“The decades-old policy is in place to ensure that all clubs provide accurate and timely information to other clubs, the public, and media about every player’s availability. It is designed for competitive fairness purposes and curtails the potential for someone to attempt to gain and exploit inside information. Without such a policy, you could envision a potential scenario in which a teammate or team personnel could be approached by a third party to sell inside information about a player’s undisclosed injury that could sideline or inhibit his performance. The policy, which is closely monitored by the league, provides a transparent look at player availability.”
Last season, the Seahawks never listed Sherman on the injury report, even though it was revealed after the season that he had been playing through a knee injury. The NFL didn’t punish the Seahawks, but they did issue a warning for never reporting the injury.