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49ers CB Richard Sherman says GM John Lynch would be banned in today’s NFL

John Lynch Richard Sherman

San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch was named as one of the nominees for the Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2019 Thursday. Lynch, who had a terrific 15-year NFL career as a strong safety, has yet to get in after being a finalist five times previously, but chances are he gets in eventually.

However, 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman doubts that Lynch would even be able to play in this current era in the league because his hard-hitting style would get him banned.

“I remember that if he played right now he wouldn’t be able to play,” Sherman said per 247Sports. “I mean he was a great player, he was smart, but he was an enforcer. Those were the days when football was actually a sport where you could be physical. Now, if he hit somebody with even half the power he was hitting them with (then) he’d be kicked out of the league. He’d be banned, and that’s sad.”

While Sherman might be exaggerating about Lynch not even being able to play, his point is well-taken. The NFL has done its best to move on from the days where players like Lynch would deliver bone-jarring hits on a consistent basis.

To be fair, the league seems to have the safety of the players in mind for trying to tone down the ferocity the game used to have. However, they may have gone too far the other direction. One particular example has been the new helmet rule, which has been strongly opposed by some defensive players like Sherman.

Unfortunately for Sherman, it doesn’t look like the NFL will be going back to playing like they did in Lynch’s heyday anytime soon, so he’ll just have to try and conform to the new rules as best he can.