Does Richard Sherman matter to the Seattle Seahawks’ defense? You bet he does.
This week’s Seattle Sidelines poll asked responders to judge what effect the loss of Sherman would have on Seattle’s defense. The All-Pro cornerback suffered a ruptured Achilles in last Thursday’s 22-16 victory over the Arizona Cardinals, an injury that will sideline him for the remainder of the season. Is the Seahawks’ defense so deep that even the loss of a player of Sherman’s caliber will have little effect? Or will the loss of Sherman doom Seattle’s season?
Here’s how folks responded:
POLL: What effect will the loss of cornerback Richard Sherman have on the Seahawks? Full context here: https://t.co/HjyP6c9YyZ
— Nick Patterson (@NickHPatterson) November 13, 2017
Total it up and 42 percent of responders believe Sherman’s loss will have a moderate effect (threatening a playoff berth), 29 percent think it will have a major effect (dooming the season), 26 percent said it would have a minor effect (causing a small drop-off), and just three percent answered that it would have no effect.
One interesting aspect of these results is the way it illustrates how phrasing answers to a question can affect the results. On Twitter there’s a character limit for poll answers, meaning no context can be given to the choices. As a result, the voters skewed much more toward the major-effect end of the spectrum. But on the Polldaddy poll on the blog there was room to flesh out the answers, and when the consequences of the effects were added the responders tempered their feelings. I’n not sure there’s any import to that observation, but as someone who regularly conducts polls I found it noteworthy.
The Seahawks took measures this week to address Sherman’s loss. Seattle brought back former Legion of Boom member Byron Maxwell, while the nearly-traded Jeremy Lane seems to be first in line to fill Sherman’s shoes at left cornerback.
Will they be able to adequately replicate Sherman’s exploits? With Seattle having other injury issues in the secondary, they’re going to have to if the Seahawks are to maintain the momentum they built by winning five of their past six games.