49ers’ impending free-agent CB Richard Sherman expects the team’s highest priority this offseason to be re-signing LT Trent Williams and then address the cornerback position given it will be “depleted” with player-departures this offseason.
“I’d expect Trent Williams to be the first order of business,” Sherman said, via Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports. “And after that, I’d expect him to work on securing the cornerback spot because that’ll be depleted after all the people who are going to be gone. And then after that, you have to work on Fred Warner this offseason.”
Sherman believes that the 49ers re-signing fellow impending free-agent CB Jason Verrett will be the “first priority” after extending Williams.
“No question. No question,” Sherman said. “I think that’ll be the first priority after Trent, in terms of free agents.”
Regarding Verrett, Sherman could see his veteran teammate receive a lot of interest as a free-agent and earn a big “payday” this offseason.
“I think they have to go down that road,” Sherman said. “But I also think he’ll have other suitors. He played up to the standard that he has shown when he came into the league. When you play up to that standard, he’s going to deserve the payday he gets.”
Former Cardinals QB Carson Palmer recalled Bruce Arians’ arrival to Arizona in 2013 after the organization went 5-11 the previous season. Palmer mentions that the former Cardinals’ coach talked about reaching the Super Bowl in their first meeting.
“He came into Arizona right when I had gotten there, and I think the team had won like three games the year before,” Palmer said, via Alex Weiner of Sports Illustrated. “He was talking Super Bowl in the very first meeting. I’m sure a lot of players were like ‘Huh? Super Bowl?'”
Palmer said that it was difficult adjusting to Arians’ offensive system in his first year with the team in 2013.
“That first year was so frustrating,” Palmer said. “I was the new quarterback in a new system and a lot of the players were the same from years prior, but it was a new system. We didn’t have great rapport yet. I didn’t feel comfortable reading guys’ body language to get ready to throw them the ball when they’re getting ready to break in or break out or go deep. Those take time and take trust.”
As for Arians’ coaching style, Palmer said the coach holds all players accountable and has an “old-school mentality.”
“That is his old-school mentality; there are no excuses,” Palmer said. “You’re paid to execute the play and if you don’t execute it, you’re going to hear about it.”
When asked about the Seahawks’ offense’s struggles in the second half of the season, QB Russell Wilson believes he could’ve played better, but did say that injuries to their offensive line and other starters also held them back.
“I think the thing for us, we had such an electric, amazing start at the beginning of the year. We were able to do everything. We went for it every game, every play, every possession,” Wilson said, via The Herd. “We hit some bumps in the road. I could have played better. I should have played better. I can do my part, too, obviously, as well. I think what happened was that we had several guys go down up front, we didn’t have our starters, necessarily, and everything else.”
Wilson feels that the Seahawks’ offense became “a little bit passive” after their defense began to improve later on in the season.
“But also as our defense kept continuing to play better, that’s the time for us to really take off and keep going and keep preparing at the highest level. That’s something we really wanted to be able to do throughout the rest of the season. Unfortunately, we didn’t go for it as much, I don’t think. I think we got a little bit passive. And we got to make sure that never happens again. We got to make sure we do everything we can to be playing this Sunday. That’s what it takes. We got great players, we got our best players, we got to let it go, go for it and everything else.”
Wilson added that their offense didn’t do well adjusting in close games and is focused on getting the Seahawks back to the Super Bowl.
“I think on offense, we didn’t adjust great throughout those tough (games). We had a couple games we could have adjusted better. That was last year, and I think that ultimately this offseason is really about ‘How can I be the best version of myself?’ And across the board. Ultimately, like I said, my mindset is we should be playing today – or I should say this weekend – so I think that’s really what matters most to me. When I wake up every day, every morning, you have that itch.”