Aside from Dallas’ DeMarco Murray, there’s not a player who’s running the football better than the Seattle Seahawks’ Marshawn Lynch. You need only look at this highlight from a couple of weeks ago as further evidence of his dominance:
Looking past the highlight reels, though, things are not good in Seattle. The defending Super Bowl champions are coming off a 24-20 loss to Kansas City and sitting just 6-4 right now. What’s more is that controversy has been brewing over Lynch’s refusal to go into the lockerroom at halftime of the game against the Chiefs.
Word is that he aggravated a back injury and didn’t think he could make it back to the lockerroom without treatment. However, the 20-degree weather that Lynch stayed out in during halftime makes some question this report.
The more popular theory is that Lynch is angry that Seattle probably won’t keep him around after this season. ESPN’s Chris Mortensen broke this report, which claims that the Seahawks have “grown tired of his ways, including pulling a no-show at the White House Super Bowl ceremony, his camp holdout, and his possible contribution to locker-room distractions.”
Another story from NFL Network claims that the running back is putting some of the blame on head coach Pete Carroll for letting negative news stories leak regarding Lynch. The 28-year-old didn’t exactly offer assurance that the reports are false. “Pete’s my head coach. Well, I mean, you know, he’s really not in my position meetings…It ain’t like we get to chop it up like that,” he said when asked if he and Coach Carroll were still on speaking terms. Lynch also said that he didn’t know if he’d be back in Seattle and he “just plays the game.”
Carroll had a bit more to say on the matter during a segment with 710 ESPN. After discussing how well Lynch has played this year and how “he’s never played better,” Carroll got into the contract issues over the summer by saying the following:
“So all that under consideration, I think (it) still goes back to summertime, talking about the contract and stuff like that. There was some conversations that not everything always works out exactly the way you want it. So we will do everything we can to keep our guys with us. You know that we’ve done that.
Marshawn was the first guy we turned to way back then, because he deserved it, he had earned it and he had been the guy that had shown that special quality and that makeup that we cherished so much. The competitiveness and all of that.
Years later in the contract, you look at it, well, it’s not quite the same deal. I think we had plenty of conversations about that in the summer time. He made his decisions to stay out and we respected that, too. We had no problem with that.
So as we’re moving forward, he’s giving us everything he’s got and we’re working through it and that’s where that is right now. This football team is determined to do well. We still have a lot out there. This is a tremendous finish opportunity and Marshawn, hopefully if he can get back again this week, he’ll be right in the middle of it with us.”
As Carroll tried to put a positive spin on, the main problem goes back to how Lynch is outperforming his contract, yet the team doesn’t want to pay him. Including base salary, signing and roster bonuses, Lynch made $8.5 million last year and $8 million this season. He’s set to make another $8 million in 2015, however, it’s very possible that he won’t be around to collect that money. And if that’s true, it will really put a dent in Seattle’s future running game.