49ers suspend radio analyst Tim Ryan after comments about Ravens QB Lamar Jackson

SAN FRANCISCO -- The 49ers have suspended their radio analyst for the upcoming game.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Tim Ryan made comments on a radio show Monday. He was discussing Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson, who is black.

Ryan said Jackson is great at faking handoffs because of his "dark skin color with a dark football."

In a statement, Ryan said, "I regret my choice of words in trying to describe the conditions of the game. Lamar Jackson is an MVP-caliber player and I respect him greatly. I want to sincerely apologize to him and anyone else I offended."

The 49ers said in a statement that they are "disappointed" in Ryan and that he won't broadcast Sunday's game at New Orleans.

"We hold Tim to a high standard as a representative of our organization and he must be more thoughtful with his words," the team said. "Tim has expressed remorse in a public statement and has also done so with us privately. We know Tim as a man of high integrity and are confident he will grow and learn from this experience."

The 49ers also said they apologized to the Ravens.

49ers cornerback Richard Sherman said Ryan personally apologized to him and several players.

Sherman said he didn't believe there was any malicious intent behind Ryan's comments.

"I've had a relationship with (Ryan) since I got here and he's never been anything but a great guy and a professional and a guy who takes his job seriously,'' Sherman said. It's unfortunate that's what it came to, but the team did what they had to do.''

Sherman said he understood how Ryan's comments could be offensive to some.

"You can always phrase things better, you can always phrase things and not say his black skin,''' Sherman added. It's a play where he's talking football and he could've used better verbiage, but I don't think anybody in this locker room has taken it offensively or anything. He's apologized and we know his character so hopefully this can blow over and we can move past it.''

Ryan played four seasons in the NFL with Chicago. He was a TV analyst on Fox for 11 years and has spent the past six seasons calling 49ers games on the radio.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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