The cornerback's response to his NFC Championship Game rant helps give SI.com to biggest day in history
Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman's Monday Morning Quarterback column about his epic rant after the NFC Championship Game Sunday helped Sports Illustrated's website garner its highest traffic day ever, SI Digital said Tuesday.
Sports Illustrated Digital said it attracted 4.3 million unique visitors online and 1.2 million on mobile Monday, driven by Sherman's first-person column for the site's MMQB blog. That topped the site's previous single day record of 3.7 million uniques last April, when NBA player Jason Collins’ announced he was gay, becoming the first athlete in the Big Four sports leagues to come out.
Sherman's column addressed his surprisingly blunt interview with Fox Sports’ Erin Andrews following Sunday night's game, where instead of answering Andrews’ general questions about the Seahawks’ victory over the visiting San Francisco 49ers, Sherman unloaded on 49ers receiver Michael Crabtree.
In the column, Sherman explained what led to that explosive reaction.
“I ran over to Crabtree to shake his hand but he ignored me,” Sherman wrote. “I patted him, stuck out my hand and said, ‘Good game, good game.’ That’s when he shoved my face, and that’s when I went off.”
Sherman said there was preexisting bad blood between him and Crabtree, but would not go into details, save to say, “I just don't like him.” According to the Seattle Times, Crabtree allegedly tried to start a fight with Sherman at a charity event in Arizona in 2013.
The cornerback did not apologize for his behavior, but castigated critics who used “racial slurs and bullying language far worse” than what they saw from him on the field.
“It was loud, it was in the moment, and it was just a small part of the person I am. I don’t want to be a villain, because I’m not a villainous person,” Sherman wrote. “To those who would call me a thug or worse because I show passion on a football field — don’t judge a person’s character by what they do between the lines. Judge a man by what he does off the field, what he does for his community, what he does for his family.”
Sherman is known for his Blanket Coverage charity, which works to provide school supplies and clothes for underprivileged children.