In recent weeks, Richard Sherman has sparred with Pete Carroll, he’s sparred with media, and he’s acted overly combative for seemingly no reason. While no one knows exactly what has gotten into Sherman, Tyler Dunne has a pretty good guess: It all stems from his (relatively poor) play on the field.

“As a player, he hasn’t been himself,” the Bleacher Report NFL writer said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “He’s been beat deep. You just don’t see that in Richard Sherman. I can remember that season-opener a couple years ago when the Packers were out there, Aaron Rodgers was so afraid of Richard Sherman (that) he wasn’t looking to that half of the field, let alone throwing to that half of the field the entire game. There was such a fear in going against Richard Sherman. That fear is gone. You’re seeing teams attack him, you’re seeing receivers – whether they’re elite talents or obscure first-year guys – have success against him.”

Sherman got into shouting match with Carroll and offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell during Seattle’ 24-3 win over the Rams on Dec. 15. The three-time All-Pro apparently wasn’t happy with Seattle’s play-calling and wanted to voice his displeasure. Sherman didn’t back down after the game, either, referencing Seattle’s infamous decision to pass the ball on the 1-yard line in Super Bowl XLIX.

“When you have . . . the circus that goes with (Sherman), the Seahawks, they’ll put up with a lot of that,” Dunne said. “Hey, maybe Richard Sherman had a point. Maybe you should run the ball at the 1-yard line. But when he’s struggling on the field, they definitely lose that swagger. They’ve kind of looked like fake tough guys. We all know those people who just kind of act all big and strong and when it comes down to it, they’re really not. That game against Green Bay, the cheap shot that Richard Sherman laid on Davante Adams that was completely unnecessary, with some of the things he’s saying, Seattle is kind of losing that edge. I don’t think teams are afraid of them anymore.”

Sherman, deep down, might know that. He also might know that his skills are eroding and that his teammates know it, too.

“That’s a good point,” Dunne said. “Maybe they’re not mutually exclusive. It could definitely be connected here where Richard Sherman has seen his own play slip and he’s kind of losing it and it’s wild to see because this time of year is when Seattle really whips into shape a lot like Green Bay, and man, they’re not.”

Seattle (9-5-1), which has dropped three of five, close the regular season in San Francisco (2-13) this Sunday. Kickoff is at 4:25 p.m. ET.


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