Seahawks Blog

Danny O'Neil covers the Seahawks for The Seattle Times.

November 4, 2011 at 9:57 AM

Richard Sherman: Never felt cornered

Posted by Danny O'Neil

RENTON -- It's tempting to say that Richard Sherman never looked back after moving to cornerback before his junior season at Stanford.

That wouldn't be accurate, though.

Everyone saw him look back last week while running side-by-side with Cincinnati receiver A.J. Green, showing an ability that's been seen all-too-rarely from Seattle cornerbacks the past few seasons: Sherman played the ball.

Sherman intercepted one pass intended for Green and defended the next one, allowing Kam Chancellor to make the interception.

Sherman certainly didn't play like a rookie making his first start at cornerback, and he certainly didn't look like someone who spent his first two seasons at Stanford catching passes instead of defending them.

So what did Sherman think when the Cardinal coaches approached him about switching to cornerback?

"Excitement," Sherman said. "It's something I played in high school a little bit. It's a different kind of mindset, you know, going into playing corner. It was exciting just to make a chance. They were saying it may not be permanent because if I don't do well at it, I'm going right back to receiver so there wasn't any pressure or anything. I thought it was going to be a fun opportunity."

Some position switches come out of desperation for playing time. Someone can't get on the field at one spot, so he's switched to another spot in hopes of finding a role.

Sherman led the Cardinal in receiving yards as a freshman and again as a sophomore. He suffered a knee injury his third season, and was granted a medical redshirt, and it was before the following season he switched to cornerback.

Had Sherman hit a plateau playing receiver?

"Not necessarily," he said. "I felt like I still had room to grow obviously. I could have continued to play and develop, but team needs and situations and things dictated the situation more than anything."

But there are times, Sherman said, where the receiver instincts kick in. Like last week against Cincinnati when he ran down that pass that rookie Andy Dalton intended for Green.

"You never really lose them," Sherman said of his receiver instincts. "It's like riding bike. So yeah, they come back. The good and the bad."

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