RENTON, Wash. -- Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman doesn't expect to see any punishment given to the New England Patriots before the Super Bowl over possibly deflating footballs in the AFC Championship Game.
"If it's against the rules, it's against the rules," Sherman said Wednesday. "But it's not going to have any effect on this game. Nobody is going to get suspended [for the Super Bowl], and nothing's going to happen. We're gonna play this game. Whatever they did, the risk/reward was greater.''
Sherman made a comparison to the fact that Seattle running back Marshawn Lynch was told he would not be allowed to play in the NFC Championship Game if he wore shoes with gold cleats because it violated the NFL's uniform code.
"That really affects the game if you suspend Marshawn for gold shoes," Sherman said. "But then you've got balls being deflated and that's the issue."
The NFL has found that 11 of the Patriots' 12 game balls were inflated significantly less than the NFL's requirements in their 45-7 victory over the Indianapolis Colts, league sources told ESPN senior NFL analyst Chris Mortensen on Tuesday. The investigation found the footballs were inflated 2 pounds per square inch below regulations.
Yet to be determined is what, if any, penalties might be imposed upon the Patriots.
Sherman was asked whether he ever has intercepted a deflated football.
"I'll have to go back to my collection and check 'em,'' he said. "I'll have to see if pounds are missing. Really, I've never heard of that. I'm not sure anything will come [of] it, if it's true or not true.
"It didn't have much effect on the [AFC Championship Game], if any."
Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson didn't want to say much about the controversy but joked: "Just as long as the football has laces, I'm good to go."
Seattle backup quarterback Tarvaris Jackson laughed about the controversy.
"That's crazy," Jackson said. "But I have thrown some balls that weren't all the way pumped up [by accident]. They do feel better. Kicking balls are horrible. They're overinflated."
Seattle defensive tackle Kevin Williams downplayed the entire affair.
"We haven't even really talked about it," Wiliams said. "You've still got to tackle, you've still got to cover and you've still got to rush the quarterback. It doesn't matter how much air is in the ball.
"It's definitely a distraction for them. That's kind of all the media is talking about right now. I'm glad it's their problem and not ours."