Ryan Clark To Quit ESPN If Patriots Trade For CB Richard Sherman

Former Pittsburgh Steelers safety Ryan Clark has made a nice transition to NFL analyst since retiring a few years ago, and that’s not overly surprising being as he was never afraid to speak his mind to the media when he was a player. With so much buzz lately surrounding the Seattle Seahawks potentially willing to trade cornerback Richard Sherman, Clark said during a recent episode of ‘First Take” that he will leave ESPN should the New England Patriots acquire the defensive back.

“If he [Sherman] goes to the Patriots, I’m letting you know now it’s the last day I’ll work for ESPN, because I’m tired of this and I can’t take it no more. And if they get another good player, I’m done,” Clark said.

Clark is obviously referring to the Patriots busy 2017 offseason that has included them trading for wide receiver Brandin Cooks, defensive end Kony Ealy and tight end Dwayne Allen. If that’s not enough, the Patriots also signed several key outside free agents since the start of the league year in cornerback Stephon Gilmore, running back Rex Burkhead and defensive tackle Lawrence Guy. Oh, and they re-signed a few of their own key free agents in linebacker Dont’a Hightower, safety Duron Harmon, defensive tackle Alan Branch and running back Brandon Bolden.

While there’s still an outside chance the Patriots could lose restricted free agent Malcomb Butler in the coming weeks either via an offer sheet or a trade, they might decide to ultimately replace him by acquiring Sherman. With that said, Sherman is scheduled to earn $11.431 million in 2017 and that would also be his salary cap number baring the Patriots extending his contract, which is set to expire after the 2018 season.

Even if another team signs Butler to an offer sheet, the Patriots could probably easily match it and depending on the structure of the contract, one can easily speculate his 2017 salary cap charge would be much lower than Sherman’s. Additionally, Butler is two years younger than Sherman.

While I don’t belive Sherman will ultimately be traded to the Patriots, it’s certainly possible and especially if Butler winds up elsewhere. Would Clark really quit his job if Sherman does land with the Patriots? I doubt it, but if such a trade transpires and he doesn’t, you can bet he’ll be reminded several times about his recent proclamation.

  • VaDave

    Sure, Like Rosie O’Donnell was going to leave the country…..

  • PaeperCup

    I know the feeling.

    I seriously don’t believe it’s something they do “well.” But for whatever reason teams just keel over and give the Pats whatever they want for pennies.

    Why didn’t the Saints take the Titans offer for Cooks, pick #18. Why did the Panthers agree to let go of a solid DE for the exchange of a few draft spots.

    Teams need to just stop dealing with them. Why are you helping the evil empire grow?

  • SteelersDepot

    Quick note. Seems like some server issues today which is very rare. Looking into issues now.

  • Steelers12

    i dont understand that as well

  • dennisdoubleday

    If Sherman is available, why wouldn’t the Steelers be interested?

  • PaeperCup


  • Ike Evans

    I feel you

  • Dakoda Baxley

    They want a good player and a high draft pick

  • RickM

    I don’t like taking 29-year-old CB’s normally. But, we are looking at a 1-3 year window with Ben. Sherman’s age is therefore less a factor. The question really would be, ‘why in the world wouldn’t we’? Do we want to stay competitive with N.E. in this brief window, or do we not?

    Maybe they should re-structure some contracts and get the guy. There is little chance that any drafted CB can help us to the degree Sherman could. At least maybe be a part of the trade discussions.

  • francesco

    Silly thing to say by Clark.
    You’re just pumping the Patriot’s even more.
    The problem with Sherman and all the shut down corners is that they get paid very high salaries and perform very well so much so that the other teams do not even bother going against them.
    In turn…this makes for a very taxing situation on the other DB’s on the same team.

  • Jim Foles

    CapGate in New England?

  • RickM

    I’m going back and forth on this one. I think Sherman has been beaten more recently than before, and that’s a sign of approaching 30. But he is still far, far better than anyone we have and the Patriots are interested in him.

    It’s the same as always, the Patriots have so much cap flexibility to consider these kinds of things. And they also have draft board flexibility, because they routinely work the board to get extra picks. The Steelers have neither, so they likely will sit on the sidelines.

  • Jeff McNeill

    Their QB plays for far less than other top QBs so the get a ton of flexibility. Such is life.

  • Keith Evans

    the phrase ‘i’m done’ in gematria is 33….just saying….

  • Gary Harkins

    see ya Ryan. What a idiot u are! go. quit. leave. u like most at espn have a patriot obssession. almost stalking like. time for espn and ryan to close up shop. bye!

  • Michael James

    Wow, I think I’ve never seen a more overrated offseason than the 2017 Patriots’ offseason.

  • Darth Blount 47

    I can only see comments through Disqus. I was about ready to leave for Pittsburgh and was gonna check in on the Depot and have been unable for the past few hours. Aaargh! I see there have been some good articles, including the latest Bryan mock! CRUD. I can’t remember the last time this has happened. :’-(

  • Q Fourtyfive Unowho


  • smartbomb2084

    That’s because Billy B. and Robby K. are renting the most space in the collective heads of the NFL.

  • Jeff Papiernik

    I think I’d rather take a younger Butler, who is as good if not better than Sherman, and for less money. Pats would be wise to steer clear.

  • Steel City Slim

    Not exactly sure what quitting his job is going to do though.

  • SkoolHouseRoxx

    The fact that they are interested means Sherman is better than Butler. Butler is a great feel good story, but him just being affiliated with Belichick has me iffy on his ability.

  • Steel Realist PAul

    I’m with him. It seems like the rules of the game are different for the Patriots. And going to the AFC Championship game SIX consecutive years bears that out more than New England having such a great organization.

  • Rosie Brown

    who cares…Good bye!!!!!

  • RickM

    Respectfully, that helps for sure but that only gives them about $10 M and they had a ton more cap space. Until this off-season, they had a team-wide understanding that they won’t pay full-market value. Agents have confirmed that any player negotiations with N.E. are tough because their view is ‘we don’t have to pay market value, because we deliver SB rings’. And they have gotten a lot of players signed for reasonable deals for that very reason. Edelman for goodness sakes, with all his production, plays for $4 Million/yr.

    This off-season they seem to be loosening the purse strings finally. I almost get the sense they want to bury the competition over the next few seasons as they maximize Brady’s final productive years.

  • Steel B

    I certainly can appreciate his frustration.

  • Steve

    Ryan was a winer with the Steelers. Go ahead and quit, you won’t be missed by me.

  • Steve

    Sherman was hurt last year with a Hernia. Seattle almost got into trouble for not reporting.

  • Jeff McNeill

    That is good for New England. Someday I exspect they will change that or it will come back to bite them.

  • Robert E Lil

    So incredibly frustrating
    To watch one team….or two (including Seattle)
    Playing chess while Pittsburgh plays checkers

    The Steelers are not imaginative not adapting- that’s necessary in the 21st century

  • VaDave

    He will fit in nicely with the clutch and grab technique the Patriot secondary has been getting away with for the last 15 years.

  • gdeuce

    what do you want the Steelers to do, none of our guys are willing to take a hometown discount so there’s not enough cap room to sign high priced FA or make trades

  • gdeuce

    it helps having such inept teams within their division

  • gdeuce

    Butler is no where near as good as Sherman

  • gdeuce

    a lot of the guys they traded for are either still on their rookie deals or have cheap contracts

  • Applebite

    The money isn’t right.
    The Steelers should take care of theri own. ie; Bell’s extension matters.
    Don’t want to catch Sherman undressing AB again, like he did during the ’15 season in Seattle.
    One too many personas on board already.
    The Value is limited (Sherman is already 29, might have 2 more good seasons left…)

  • RickM

    That’s the reason for their cap success. The have the guts to trade guys like Jaime Collins and Chandler Jones rather than pay them double-digit, long-term deals. They’re confident that they either have a younger, cheaper replacement within their own system, or they can sign a cheaper alternative. And in the end, they succeed without these guys. I cannot stand them, but they handle their personnel issues better than any team in the NFL – by far.

  • RickM

    Valid point. He really had trouble with change of direction patterns last year, and that may be the reason.

  • RickM

    Seattle certainly specializes in that. I’m not sure the Patriots do, but I try to watch them as little as possible so may have missed it.

  • Jeremy McClurg

    I’d give this year’s first rounder, and the 2018,19 1st rounders for him, hypothetically if I were the Steelers GM. You’re telling me you wouldn’t give that up for the chance to have Richard Sherman play across from Artie Burns? The best argument against that, would be that we will need one of those picks for a QB in the future. People over value draft picks anymore. Most drafts picks are either busts, or they are just average at best.
    For example. The Browns have been crap for a long time, right?
    The Patriots were willing to give them Jimmy Garoppolo for both of their first round picks. The QB class is crap this year. Jimmy does have little experience, but he played great in the short time he played, and he’s been watching Brady for the past couple of years. I have one question. HOW DO THEY NOT MAKE THAT TRADE!?!?! It baffles me that the Browns aren’t willing to trade 2 players; whom could be busts, for a QB that’s smart and ready to go. I don’t get it.

  • Rocksolid20

    Thats what we need , two more good years , while we still have a HOF QB to lead us too the Super Bowl .

  • Conserv_58

    IMO, it comes down to the bang-for-their-bucks issue. Sherman is a very good player, but at his age he’s at the late stages of his physical prowess. Given that and his huge cap hit the Steelers are wise to steer clear of him. They’re better off drafting a young blue chip CB that excells in man coverage to compliment Artie Burns. Signing Sherman is an expensive short term solution, if he’s even a solution. Drafting a stud CB has greater long term value at a much more palatable cap hit.

  • Conserv_58

    That’s a spot on analysis.

    There is also the fact that Bellichik consistently gets more out of unknown and obscure players than any other coach in the league does. As much as I despise Bellichik, the person there is no denying that his system of teaching and developing players is second to none. He’s a tough task master that holds his players intellectually accountable to know their roles, inside and out. I’ve seen interviews with his players and they all say that Bellichik routinely and randomly challenges their knowledge of his system and their role in that system. He demands that his players know the answers or they will be replaced.

  • Conserv_58

    No. That’s not what they need because there is no guarantee that at 29, Sherman can return their investment in him. There is also the issue of him willingly acclimating to the Steelers’ culture and their locker room. Given Sherman’s gregarious personality I’m not sure that he could.

  • Conserv_58

    It isn’t just their division. They’ve owned the Steelers and the rest of the AFC ever since Brady assumed the starting QB role.

  • Conserv_58

    This is utter nonsense founded on complete ignorance.

  • Conserv_58

    First, There is no way that I’d make that trade for Sherman, especially at his age.
    Secondly, You’re comparing the patriots organization vs the browns organization. That’s laughable, at best because there is no comparison!

    As for your comment that the draft is over valued by fans doesn’t hold weight because their are numerous examples of rookie draft picks making immediate impacts for their teams. The Steelers had three of their 2016 draft picks, Burns, Davis and Hargrave make immediate and positive impacts.

  • Conserv_58

    With the rest of her fellow Hollyweird, politically brain dead and hypocrirical frauds that also threatened to leave the country.

  • Terrible Towlie

    not having to talk about the cheatriots anymore…..good for him. there’s other jobs out there

  • Michael Mosgrove

    how much have you drank? 3 first rounders for a good yet aging db? no thanks.

  • Terrible Towlie

    nobody want to come to live in the armpit of the world?

  • Michael Mosgrove

    of the world? yeah no. not even in pennsylvania. fallon nevada is the armpit of the world, conneaut ohio is the arsehole of the world.

  • dennisdoubleday

    It is instructive where the Patriots spend their money. $12M for Gilmore, and if they get Sherman, wow nice secondary. They keep the costs low at WR and RB and make it work with Brady. Maybe Brady is the only one who CAN make that work, but it is different from what the Steelers are doing.

  • Bryan Ischo

    Dude loves his wines …

  • Jay Clam 2021

    How do the Pats have all this cap space and so many picks/assets for trades? It almost defies logic.

  • westcoasteeler

    I take umbrage with some of your insults, sir. Furthermore, I bet you’d love to come to one of our party’s and try to explain how awesome the politics are these days and not sound like a misspeller.

  • Zarbor


  • TrappenWeisseGuy ;

    BB does not try to be “one of the guys” by fist bumping and belly bumping with his players unlike somebody we know.