Sherman provides unique insight on the Deebo trade saga, originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
As the Deebo Samuel saga continues, the NFL world waits in anticipation one day ahead of the 2022 NFL Draft to see if the 49ers get an irrefutable offer for the one-of-a-kind receiver.
Only time will tell what Deebo’s future holds, but as everyone is putting in their two cents, Richard Sherman decided to join the conversation with a unique take on the situation.
After Samuel removed all references to the 49ers from his social media, fans began to speculate and weren’t too happy. The receiver shared on his Instagram story how he was getting death threats and racial comments from “fans”.
And Sherman thinks that may have played a part in why Deebo officially requested a trade five days later.
“I think it’s some of the fans,” Sherman said on “The Richard Sherman Podcast”. “I think it’s some of the stuff the fans are saying … sometimes people’s biggest strength of ‘I just want to cheer for my guy and I’m so passionate about the 49ers’ could be your biggest weakness. Because you’re sitting there telling him that he’s not a person and you only care about him when he’s doing what you want.
“Instead of saying ‘Hey, we support you either way, Deebo. You deserve to get your money’ and leave it at that. You don’t need to come at his character, you don’t need to come at it personally, because when you start to do that, the human element of a person says, ‘Hm, these people don’t appreciate me’. ”
One of the other reasons circulating the Deebo trade chronicles is his usage.
Kyle Shanahan’s decision to use Samuel in the backfield last season was a game-changing for the 49ers. His versatility even led to the creation of a new, self-proclaimed position: wide back.
But Sherman understands why Deebo wouldn’t want to be utilized in that way moving forward. As both a receiver and running back, Deebo is taking more hits than your typical receiver.
Although his ability to play both positions put his talent on a whole other level in his historic breakout season with the 49ers, Sherman knows the type of wear and tear that does to someone’s body.
“There’s a different beating you take,” Sherman explained on the podcast. “People are like ‘Man, look at how tough he is. Look at those big runs and how many tackles he’s breaking.’ He still feels it. He’s still a human being. He still has bruises on his back and his shoulder and his neck. He still feels every blow he takes. Deebo’s fighting for extra yards, he’s doing everything he can because he’s a competitor and he wants to help his team win.
“And that’s why I think the disrespect hurts so much because he’s like “Hey, I play through injury. When you guys needed it, I showed up in the biggest games in the biggest way. You gave me the ball when everyone knew I was getting the ball and I still made it happen for you. Now make it happen for me. Show me the same loyalty and strengths and belief and faith that I showed you’. Elijah Mitchell’s a running back. Raheem [Mostert] was a running back. He’s not a running back, he doesn’t need to take those hits consistently.”
If it’s not his usage, is it because the 49ers are shifting from Jimmy Garoppolo and focused on developing 21-year-old Trey Lance at QB?
Sherman doesn’t think so, stating he doesn’t think the two played enough games together for it to make that much of an impact on Deebo’s decision.
Although Jimmy G and Deebo have a great relationship, Sherman believes Lance as the apparent starting QB next season is irrelevant to Samuel’s trade request.
The former 49ers cornerback hasn’t spoken to John Lynch or Shanahan, but said he, like many others, can’t imagine San Francisco would be trading away Deebo this offseason.
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“Being in that locker room, being in that environment, I can’t see them letting him walk,” he said. “I can’t see them trading him away. I can’t see him doing anything but lining up for the San Francisco 49ers and playing football.”
And even though he’s out of the loop like everyone else, Sherman speculates the business side of things could have gotten messy during the negotiation process.
For now, Deebo is a 49er whether he likes it or not. But of course, it’s the NFL offseason and anything can happen.
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