Remember when ESPN dropped that bombshell feature on the divide within the Seahawks' locker room partly due to the preferential treatment Pete Carroll supposedly gave Russell Wilson and the offense? Well, it turns out members of the Seahawks don't agree with it -- or at the very least, they're publicly coming out strongly against the story.
Here are his entire comments:
"I think it's all fake news. I think it's all dead. It was a dead period so people needed something to talk about.
"But at the same time too, let's be honest, it's 90 guys in the locker room right now. There is no way that 90 guys are going to always get along. That's just what it is. I'm pretty sure there are people at your job right now that's way less than 90 that don't get along. That's just part of it.
"Now as far as it being Russ and Sherm or Russ and whoever, I don't think that's true. I've never had any issues with Russ. I don't think anybody has issues with Russ. We all want the best for Russ, and Russ wants the best for us. That's the only way we are going to succeed. I haven't seen it. I don't know what they are referring to. Maybe they know something that I don't know. I don't know."
Real quick, before we take a closer look at Avril's comments, let's back up a bit and fresh ourselves. On May 25, ESPN published a story reported and written by Seth Wickersham. That story reported a variety of issues within the Seahawks' locker room, but focused on star cornerback Richard Sherman, who spent the offseason ensnared in trade rumors. Wickersham told a story of a tense locker room with schisms involving Wilson and Sherman. He even included a nugget about Sherman wanting to leave Seattle for the Cowboys or Patriots.
Immediately, the Seahawks denounced the story. Sherman called it "a bunch of nonsense." Defensive lineman Michael Bennett told ESPN on Twitter that the story was "trash" and "gossip." You get the point.
Here's what Wickersham had to say at the time:
For obvious reasons (they get paid by and play for the Seahawks, to name a couple), we're likely never going to get confirmation from current members of the team. What're they going to say? That they think Wickersham perfectly captured their internal issues? What else are the Seahawks supposed to do except issue denials?
For the record, Wickersham is one of the best NFL reporters alive, and his use of anonymous sources shouldn't be used as a reason to discount one of his stories. None of the Seahawks' denials have offered proof of any misreporting.
With that being said, what Avril said is totally true -- not the "fake news" part, but the next part:
"But at the same time too, let's be honest, it's 90 guys in the locker room right now. There is no way that 90 guys are going to always get along. That's just what it is. I'm pretty sure there are people at your job right now that's way less than 90 that don't get along. That's just part of it."
Expecting all 90 men in the locker room to be best friends just isn't realistic. And the truth is, schisms probably exist in every single NFL locker room. In that regard, the Seahawks aren't that much different than any other team.