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“I Wouldn’t Do Brenden That Way”: Jerry Rice’s Blunt Response to Deion Sanders Pulling an ‘Eli Manning’ Move

Published 04/02/2024, 1:05 PM EDT

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Deion Sanders is no stranger to criticism. First, it was his “Because I’m Deion Sanders” statement that raged a fire in the NCAA domain. Call it a part of the Prime Effect, but some of his statements rein the power of eliciting a series of colorful criticisms, something that repeated when Deion Sanders asked his son to pull an “Eli Manning” in the 2025 NFL draft. Restricting his son from entering certain teams was not something the CFB world anticipated, despite the analysts going on and on about Prime coddling his children.

This added another set of accusations being hurled at Deion Sanders along with his already incoming accusations on his parenting style. The shocking element amidst all this came when Sanders’ fellow Hall of Famer Jerry Rice, too, chipped in his bit in condemning Prime in his non-violent, composed way.

Brenden Rice would not need to pull an Eli

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Brenden Rice, the son of legendary Jerry Rice, is set to be the WR teams have their eyes set on in the 2024 NFL draft. However, they might be awaiting a final thumbs-up from his father before they give the final green flag to Brenden. Rice leveraged the All Facts No Break podcast platform with Keyshwan Johnson to address two things: his stance on Brenden Rice getting drafted by an NFL team, and his retort on Deion Sanders’ suggesting Shedeur pull an “Eli Manning.” “I wouldn’t do Brenden that way,” Rice declared.

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Stating the reason for it he said, “I’m one of those guys that believe that anywhere you go if you work hard and if you leave by example, you’re going to have success and you’re going to bring everybody else along with you.” But choosing the prove-yourself path for his son didn’t cease Rice from complimenting his son’s abilities. “He has to go in there and prove himself. If he does that, I think he’s going to be a great leader, and he’s going to bring a lot of success to that team for sure,” Rice said with a proud dad smile. While Rice and the majority of others were not in unison with what Sanders had to say, there were a few who nodded in agreement with Prime.

The voices in support of Deion Sanders

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This is where the debate gets sizzling. While many believe Deion Sanders is merely controlling his sons’ lives, others believe he’s just being a father, who wants nothing but the best for his sons. So, it should not make him much of a villain to put his behind-the-scenes NFL knowledge to use for his son, right?

Roland S. Martin was one of the few who showed their unwavering support towards Sanders’ idea. Calling Prime ‘absolutely right’, he pulled a fair point well made. “He wants his son and Travis Hunter, who he looks at as a son, to be in the best position to be great,” Martin said, giving the ultimate clap back to each one, thinking Sanders’ concern was limited to his son.

READ ALSO: After Banning Shedeur Sanders From Certain NFL Destinations, Coach Prime Predicted to “Manipulate” the Draft to Fulfill Son’s Superbowl Dream

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Moreover, Martin presented another positive side to Sanders’ decision as well, saying, “I think more athletes should do this because they should not be forced to go to places just because of a draft.” It is no secret that several players shake hands with franchises and shift to cities that have radically different weather conditions from the ones they used to play in, resulting in their performance only deteriorating. So, do you think Sanders is doing the right thing? Or do you stand with Jerry Rice and several others? Drop your thoughts in the comments.

Despite Jerry Rice’s High Praise, Coach Prime Accused of “Half As**d Work” at Colorado

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Written by:

Pankti Parmar

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Pankti Parmar is an NFL news writer at EssentiallySports. She combines her educational background in psychology with a passion for sports to delve into the minds of athletes and their game strategies. She's our resident expert on Jim Harbaugh and played a pivotal role in our play-by-play coverage of Harbaugh's journey from the Wolverines to the Chargers.
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Edited by:

Tripti Sarda