The flashy red suit and front facing ball cap will be the lasting image from Richard Sherman’s first press conference as a member of the San Francisco 49ers. His head-turning wardrobe matched his poignant message at the podium: Sherman is all-in and ready to look ahead to his fresh start in the Bay Area.
From his respect for John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan to an update on his return to football, here are the most notable quotes from San Francisco’s new cornerback.1. Up-and-comers
Sherman has mentioned multiple times that Jimmy Garoppolo was part of the draw when signing with the 49ers. He added on Tuesday that the rest of the roster holds plenty of promise as well.
“Jimmy is a tremendous asset for this team and he played outstanding football, but there are a lot of young guys who I expect to have a leap from last year to this year,” Sherman said. “I’m looking forward to the challenge of growing with another group of men and bringing them back to the top.”2. Culture is everything
You can add Sherman to the list of players who thinks the world of Lynch and Shanahan. Those two continue to make San Francisco a destination for players. It’s also been made clear to Sherman that everyone on the roster has bought in to Lynch and Shanahan’s vision for the 49ers.
“They brought stability to this organization," Sherman said. "They brought fun. They brought belief. They brought faith. The players believe they can win. The players believe in the staff. Everybody that I’ve spoken to speaks very highly about everybody on the staff."**
- Silencing doubters**
Let’s be honest, Sherman has made a living out of proving people wrong. The slights against his game and those who put a cap on his potential have always fueled the corner. It used to be that Sherman was a nobody, a fifth-round pick that wouldn’t amount to much. Now his critics say that he’ll never be the same following his Achilles tear.
“There are some people that are cut from a different cloth and built from different things and I think I’m one of those people,” Sherman said. “I look forward to showing people that you can come back better from things. … I look forward to coming back better than ever. I’ve got a lot of things to show a few people."
Sherman also confirmed that he'd be cleared to play well before the start of training camp.4. The other side of a rivalry
For years, Sherman has been the focal point of the 49ers-Seahawks rivalry. He doesn’t expect that to change now that he’s wearing red and gold.
“At the end of the day, the rivalry is what it is. It’ll be renewed, and I’m sure I’ll be at the center of it again,” Sherman said.**
- Taking the lead**
Sherman immediately becomes the most decorated member of the 49ers defense. That success and experience makes him an ideal leader for San Francisco’s young nucleus, a role he doesn’t plan to take lightly.
“I look forward to helping this group grow,” Sherman said. “I think that one of my best attributes is leadership and helping guys get the best out of themselves. And I think that at the end of the day, that’s all I want to do. I want to help them become better men and better players.
“I think that’s my job and I take that responsibility seriously.”