Richard Sherman has gained a bad reputation since his post-game rant after the NFC title game on Sunday.
Critics have called him eccentric, childish and immature, while others view him as confident and focused.
Some members of the Denver Broncos, whom the Seahawks will face in Super Bowl XLVIII, look at Sherman as the latter.
“He’s done a great job ever since he’s been in the league,” Broncos tight end Julius Thomas said to The Denver Post. “He likes to have a little fun out there. I don’t necessarily think there is anything wrong with that.”
Thomas’ breakout season has been one of the key reasons the Broncos have the No. 1 offense in the NFL.
In 14 games this season, Thomas caught 65 passes for 788 yards and 12 touchdowns. In two games this postseason, he has logged 14 catches for 161 yards.
A big man at 6-foot-5, 250 pounds, he will be a tough target to cover for the Seahawks defense.
But the Seahawks have countered big tight ends in the past (see Vernon Davis, Jimmy Graham, etc.). The big difference this time is that the Broncos have a lot of other key receivers all capable of making big plays.
It will be the job of the Seahawks secondary to make sure that doesn’t happen.
“I know the Seahawks are statistically very good on defense and in particular pass defense,” Broncos head coach John Fox told The Denver Post. “I’m sure their secondary has a lot to do with that.”
Specifically, Fox called Sherman a “terrific player, a great cover guy.”
The Seahawks have the No. 1 defense in the league and the pass defense is a big reason why. The secondary only allows 172 passing yards per game, best in the league.
Peyton Manning has lead the Broncos to average more than 340 passing yards per game this season, and he threw for 400 yards in the AFC Championship game on Sunday.
Something will have to give on Super Bowl Sunday.