Cornerback Richard Sherman has not spent much time over the past four months beating himself up for getting beaten late in the 49ers’ Super Bowl LIV loss.
“It’s football,” Sherman said this week on a video call with Bay Area reporters. “Nobody’s played a perfect game, yet.”
Sherman was close to perfect during the regular season.
He was selected to the Pro Bowl and was a second-team All-Pro selection after allowing a passer rating of 46.8 when targeted and just 227 yards, according to Pro Football Focus. Only 52.9 percent of passes thrown against his coverage were completed.
But Sherman surrendered a key play on the Kansas City Chiefs’ go-ahead drive with 3:45 remaining in the fourth quarter. Wide receiver Sammy Watkins avoided Sherman’s attempted jam at the line of scrimmage with an inside move. Then, Watkins drifted toward the right sideline, where Patrick Mahomes found him with a perfectly thrown pass for a 38-yard gain to the 49ers' 10-yard line.
Three plays later, Damien Williams scored on a 5-yard run to give Kansas City a 24-20 lead.
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Cornerbacks often talk about the importance of having a short memory because of the high failure rate at the position. Sherman, an NFL All-Decade selection, said he does not dwell on the play because he knows he took no shortcuts during the week to prepare for the game.
“Honestly, it didn’t bother me much, period,” Sherman said. “I went out there and prepared the best I could. The guy made a good play. It is what it is. I gave up a 38-yard catch in the football game. I gave up 60 yards in the game.”
Mahomes completed five passes for 72 yards with Sherman in coverage in the Chiefs’ 31-20 victory in the Super Bowl, according to PFF.
“I’m not going to sit there and beat myself up about it like I didn’t prepare hard, like I didn’t go out there and put my best foot forward,” said Sherman, 32, a nine-year veteran. “You win some. You lose some. You live to fight another day.”