Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Rapoport feels Richard Sherman to 49ers ‘would be a really good addition’

Sep 13, 2021 at 11:01 AM--

Could Richard Sherman returning to the San Francisco 49ers be on the horizon for the veteran cornerback? Head coach Kyle Shanahan revealed that the two sides had been in contact about the possibility but didn't indicate anything was imminent.

Still, it is an intriguing possibility. The 49ers lost their starting cornerback, Jason Verrett, to what appears to be a season-ending ACL injury. That confirmation is expected today. A week ago, the team signed Josh Norman for depth. But a significant injury to one of your best defenders can force you to look at your options. That's what the 49ers are preparing to do.

San Francisco has options. Emmanuel Moseley has missed time—including Sunday's game—with a knee injury, but that isn't expected to be a long-term issue. Deommodore Lenoir looked impressive in his first NFL start, but he is a rookie.

Then you have Sherman, who spent the past three seasons with the 49ers and has been unable to garner enough offseason interest to land on an NFL roster.

"Yeah, there has been contact," NFL Media insider Ian Rapoport said this morning on KNBR's Murph & Mac show. "He would make a lot of sense. I always thought that he would kind of be in their plans. I just thought it would be later in the season, as we kind of get on a little bit. You lose a starter to an ACL injury, maybe it's quicker than we imagine.

"I think it is worth tracking. I think it would be a really good addition. Now, I know the offseason hasn't gone like Richard Sherman wanted. Obviously, the legal situation seemed really, really alarming at first. And now, I kind of don't know what it is. Probably not quite like we thought. So, I think it bears watching, and I think it makes a lot of sense."

The legal situation Rapoport refers to stems from an incident in July that saw Sherman arrested and charged with five misdemeanors, including criminal trespass with a domestic violence designation, malicious mischief, a DUI, and resisting arrest. There was even a report that the cornerback threatened suicide on the night of the incident.

"I am deeply remorseful for my actions ...," Sherman said via social media following the incident. "I behaved in a manner I am not proud of. I have been dealing with some personal challenges over the last several months, but that is not an excuse for how I acted. The importance of mental and emotional health is extremely real and I vow to get the help I need."

General manager John Lynch reached out the Sherman and his family to let them know that they could depend on the 49ers as a resource for any help they needed.

Sherman pleaded not guilty to the charges. With his legal issues ongoing, the worry might be that the veteran cornerback could serve as a distraction. However, he does have the ability to step right into the defense and contribute immediately.

Rapoport doesn't expect the NFL to get involved in the situation surrounding Sherman. The insider says any league interference is usually reserved for violent crimes. Yes, there was a domestic violence designation on the criminal trespass charge, but that was due to the trespass taking place on family property.

"I do not have evidence right now, nor is there a conclusion that we've seen that happen with Richard Sherman," Rapoport said. "Like, we don't know everything. But just based on what the charges were, of his legal situation, it doesn't feel like the Commissioner's Exempt List is coming. We will see if that changes if he does get signed, but I don't believe so."

Sherman is a five-time Pro Bowl selection and a three-time first-team All-Pro. His last Pro Bowl selection came during the 2019 season when he earned his highest overall Pro Football Focus grade (90.3) since 2014.

You can listen to the entire conversation with Rapoport below.


  • Should the 49ers re-sign Richard Sherman?
  • Yes
  • No
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