SEATTLE – Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman suggested Wednesday the NFL intentionally edited video highlights of a controversial play he was involved in at the end of last Sunday's game against the Atlanta Falcons.
The claim: the league didn’t want to show receiver Julio Jones with his hands to Sherman’s facemask, which can be called as a penalty.
“100 percent,” Sherman said when asked whether he thought a video highlight package was deliberately edited to cut out Jones’ potential foul. The Seattle Times reports the package appeared on Showtime’s Inside The NFL, which is produced by NFL Films. “They don’t want to help defenses in the least.”
The consensus since Sunday is Sherman should have been flagged for pass interference after grabbing Jones’ arm at the end of the play on 4th and 10. The ball went incomplete, and the Seahawks won 26-24.
One camera angle replay that aired on the FOX broadcast followed Jones and Sherman the entire length of the play. Jones clearly put his hand to Sherman’s facemask as he took off from the line of scrimmage. (Due to NFL rules, we cannot post any replays on our website)
Sherman fell but got back up in time to catch Jones before the ball got there.
“It’s difficult to recover when you almost fall at the beginning of the play, you get pushed in the face,” said Sherman.
Had both penalties been called, they would have canceled each other out, and the down would have been played again.
Sherman tweeted about what Jones did and a penalty not being called, but later deleted it, according to The Seattle Times.
“The NFL played a video and didn’t show the front of the play,’’ Sherman said when asked about it during his weekly press conference. “That’s just how the league is about defensive players, you know.’’
Related: Sherman says he wears his emotions on his sleeve
The play has caused some to suggest the NFL needs to make pass interference reviewable. Sherman disagrees, saying you could find various penalties on every NFL play if you reviewed them all.
But Sherman has consistently said he believes the pass interference rule needs to change to make it fair on both sides. Defensive pass interference is a spot foul. That means if a player commits the foul 60 yards downfield, it’s a 60-yard penalty. But offensive pass interference is always a 10-yard penalty.
“I’d make it 15 yards like college. I’d make both sides 15 yards,” said Sherman.
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