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Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Richard Sherman loves playing for the 49ers, understands salary cap constraints may push him elsewhere

Dec 9, 2020 at 6:50 AM--

Richard Sherman expects to continue his Hall-of-Fame-worthy career in 2021. It may not be with the San Francisco 49ers, though. In fact, the veteran cornerback doesn't sound at all optimistic that he will remain with the organization after his three-year contract expires at the end of the season.

The 49ers would love to keep Sherman, and the cornerback would love to stay. It's just that the numbers may not match up.

"I know in Sherm's time here, he's been everything we've hoped and more," head coach Kyle Shanahan said last week. "And I really hope these next whatever games we have left, I really hope that's not the end of it."

During The Cris Collinsworth Podcast, Collinsworth asked his co-host, Sherman, if he plans to play next season.

"Yeah, that's a foregone conclusion," Sherman responded. "I'm definitely playing football. I just don't know where I'm going to play football, unfortunately."

If both sides want to continue the marriage, why the talk of a potential divorce? Sherman knows the NFL is a business and the salary-cap-strapped team may have significantly less wiggle room next season. That will force some difficult decisions, and Sherman could be one of the roster casualties.

"With what we talked about, this cap situation, it's going to have drastic effects on a lot of teams," Sherman continued. "Regardless of what the number ends up being -- the Saints will end up looking like a totally different team. I think they're $70 million over what the projected cap is. I think the Eagles are $50 million over what the projected cap is.

"... The business of football is just the business of football. It's undefeated, and I think the organization values me, and I love this organization, and I love this team, but you can't stop the business of football. They have to do what's best for them in the long term, and I respect that, and I've got to try to do what's best for me."

Sherman notes that one way out of the salary-cap situation might be to use the NFL's potential new television contract money and have it front-loaded into the salary cap to lessen the drastic drop for next season.

"I think that would be the smart move, but it's up to the owners, at the end of the day," Sherman said. "They're going to be the ones that are able to make that decision. I think it would be best, but I don't call that shot."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Sherman below.


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