The Stanford product is a three-time, first-team All Pro, has been voted to the Pro Bowl twice and has help anchor a Seahawks defense that has been one of the league’s best the last four seasons.
He’s also talked every step of the way.
“Go follow the No. 1 receiver,” Cromartie said. “Follow him around for the entire game, and then let’s see what you can do.”
Cromartie’s comments are centered on the premise that Sherman, who considers himself a “shutdown cornerback” and the league’s best defensive back, rarely, if ever, strays from his side of the field. During his time playing under defensive coordinators Gus Bradley and Dan Quinn, Sherman has been islanded off on his side of the field and tasked with shutting down whatever wideout comes his way.
He’s done it quite well, too. In each of the last three seasons, Sherman has ranked in the Top 5 of ProFootballFocus.com’s cornerback ratings and last year allowed just a 48 percent completion percentage. A quarterback’s rating when testing him? A 39.8.
Cromartie’s argument--which is one shared by others around the league-- is that Sherman’s statistics are skewed. Team’s counter Seattle’s refusal to move Sherman by instead moving their best receiver to the other side of the field. Sherman is left covering the team’s second- or third-best option while other players deal with the opposition’s No. 1.
That’s not how Darrelle Revis, Cromartie’s teammate and the player he views as the best in the league, does it. Revis follows an opponent’s top target anywhere he goes on the field. Then shuts that player down.
“You want to label yourself as the No. 1 cornerback, the best cornerback in the NFL, follow the best guy on every single team.”
Cromartie says other cornerbacks also don’t have the luxury Sherman does for whom he shares the secondary with. Lining up at safety for Seattle every year Sherman has been in the NFL are Pro Bowlers Kam Chancellor and Earl Thomas.
“I would tell him, ‘Go play in a defense where you don’t have two all-pro safeties,” Cromartie said.
Related: Revis at OTAs