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News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

January 24, 2014
Seahawks' Sherman fined for after-interception gesture to Kaepernick

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The NFL fined Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman $7,875 for his end-of-game "choking" sign directed at 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. The gesture followed the game-clinching interception in the end zone in which Sherman tipped the ball to linebacker Malcolm Smith, who was trailing on the play.

Immediately after the play, Sherman ran to receiver Michael Crabtree, gave him a condescending pat on the backside and then extended his hand for a handshake saying, "Helluva game, helluva game." Crabtree shoved the cornerback in the facemask. At that point, Sherman put both hands around his throat, a gesture he later said was meant for Kaepernick.

Sherman noted that the 49ers quarterback hadn't challenged him for most of the game, and his post-game rage suggested he was insulted that the 49ers would attack him at the game's most critical moment.

"I really appreciate that, Kap," Sherman said afterward. "You try me like that. I hadn't gotten many opportunities all game. I'm happy. I'm happy about that."

Asked if he was surprised the 49ers threw in his direction, Sherman said, "I think everybody in the stadium was surprised. You throw that, it's a mistake."

No other players were fined, including 49ers safety Donte Whitner and 49ers cornerback Carlos Rogers, both of whom were penalized for unnecessary roughness. Seahawks special teams player Chris Maragos was not fined for hitting punter Andy Lee. Maragos was penalized but only for running into the kicker, a five-yard foul. Maragos hit Lee's plant leg, which typically is a 15-yard roughing-the-kicker penalty.

The league has not made a determination on the sideline incident in which Seahawks special teams player Jeremy Lane was knocked to the ground after making contact with a staffer on the 49ers sideline.

-- Matt Barrows



MATTHEW BARROWS

Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.

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