The Richard Sherman era in San Francisco has come to a close.
With the star cornerback’s three-year, $27.1 million contract expiring this offseason, Sherman is an unrestricted free agent heading into 2021. While his secondary production was vital with the 49ers, the franchise is not expected to re-sign the aging defender due to cap space issues.
Working as his own agent, Sherman now has free reign with selecting his next NFL franchise destination.
With countless possibilities for the valuable cornerback asset, NFL analysts have had a tough time pinning down Sherman’s next move. But, CBS NFL insider Jason La Canfora has one ideal landing spot in mind: the Las Vegas Raiders.
“Did I mention the Raiders stink on all three levels of defense? Like brutally bad?” La Canfora wrote. “Jon Gruden has taken a shine to Sherman. He has leadership skills and loves being in the Bay Area with the 49ers and is one of the better corner available. He represents himself and, yeah, I could totally see this.”
Earlier this year, Raiders coach Jon Gruden joined the Cris Collinsworth Podcast featuring Richard Sherman. During his appearance, the veteran coach made it very clear he was interested in having Sherman join his squad in 2021.
Gruden’s comments sparked some major tampering allegation controversy.
“Richard Sherman, if you are a free agent, which there is a rumor you are, we are looking for an alpha presence in our secondary,” Gruden said. “Somebody that could play this Hawk 3-press technique with the read step. If you’re available and interested, maybe you and I can get together at some point off-air.”
Sherman seemed equally interested in the potential opportunity.
“There’s a conversation to be had, for sure,” Sherman responded. “I am free and available these days, fortunately, and unfortunately.”
Through the 2020 season, the 8-8 Las Vegas squad struggled mightily on the defensive end — especially when it came to defending against the pass. Ranking No. 26 in the NFL, the Raiders’ secondary allowed 263.3 yards through the air per game.
With two second-year NFL pros currently listed as starters on the Las Vegas secondary depth chart, Sherman could provide a much-needed veteran presence on the defensive end.