RENTON, Wash. -- On Monday night at FedEx Field, Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman probably will line up a few times against a childhood friend in Washington Redskins wide receiver DeSean Jackson.
Just how long has Sherman known Jackson?
“Since we were in elementary school, in the second or third grade,” Sherman said.
Sherman and Jackson were Little League teammates growing up in the Compton area of Los Angeles. DeSean’s father, Bill, was one of their coaches. Bill died of pancreatic cancer in 2009.
Sherman wrote a column defending DeSean last year when he was accused of being involved in gangs. Jackson was released by the Philadelphia Eagles last March and signed a three-year, $24 million deal with the Redskins in April.
“He’s always been always been one of the top athletes in whatever sport we were playing,” Sherman said of Jackson. “A lot of people would’ve guessed he would’ve gone baseball, especially early on in the way his father was involved in baseball. He has always been a fantastic athlete.”
Sherman is known for trash talking with his opponent during the games. How will that go with Jackson?
“It’s going to be a fun one,” Sherman said. “It’s always fun playing against family and friends. You have a good time. It’s just the same competitive edge, but there’s a little more to it.”
As you would expect, Sherman doesn’t want his childhood buddy to get the best of him Monday night.
“Obviously, you have to be aware of his speed," Sherman said. “I think everyone is aware of his playmaking ability. You’ve just got to stay on top of it and keep your eyes on him.”