Another day, another bizarre Marshawn Lynch press conference cut short
JERSEY CITY, N.J. — Well … we tried, America.
For the second straight day, the Seattle Seahawks trotted running back Marshawn Lynch out into the media scrum — this time at the Westin Jersey City for a standard team availability event as opposed to the Prudential Center for Media Day — and for the second straight day, Lynch lasted about six minutes before leaving. This time Lynch was in a third-floor conference-room hallway, with best friend and roommate Michael Robinson by his side. Robinson’s presence was supposed to make Lynch feel at ease, but it didn’t really work — he was off-kilter from the start, answering questions like “How do you define Beast Mode” with taciturn responses.
“I really don’t have too much to say, boss. I really don’t,” Lynch said when asked about the media attention that has surrounded him lately. “I appreciate it, but I don’t get it. I’m just here so I won’t get fined, boss. That’s the only reason I’m here.”
So, the Seattle media tried to have some fun with what was rapidly turning into a disaster. Liz Mathews, from ESPN Radio in Seattle, and I started asking Robinson questions we would have asked Lynch, and Robinson played right along — responding as Marshawn would, and ending everything with “boss,” as Lynch likes to do.
“I’m gonna slide up in this thing right here and break the monotony a little bit,” Robinson said with a smile when he took over the press conference. “Marshawn ain’t trying to say nothing to you guys, OK? So, you can direct your questions to me.”
One reporter wanted to know how Lynch felt about the day’s events.
“He just talked about that,” Robinson responded. “He just wants to play ball.”
I then asked Robinson how he would define Beast Mode. Because, why the heck not?
“It’s a lifestyle, boss.”
Robinson was then asked how Lynch feels about Skittles.
“He loves them, boss.”
I then wanted to know if there was any specific sociological reasoning behind Lynch’s now famous quote, ‘It’s just ’bout dat action, boss.’”
“It’s ’bout ‘dat action. Boss,” Robinson opined.
An international reporter then asked Robinson about football for women. No one was sure if this question was meant for Robinson or Lynch, but Robinson took it.
“Football for women? You must be talking about soccer. You European? Oh, OK. You must be talking about … are you talking about pigskin? I like my wife. And I like football.”
Another reporter asked Lynch if he just considered paying the $50,000 fine he received earlier in January from the NFL for his reticence in front of reporters.
“I’m here … boss,” Lynch said with a slightly incredulous smile.
Lynch was then asked about cornerback Richard Sherman’s vow that he would teach Lynch to be more expressive with the media.
“No, boss,” Robinson cut in.
After a few more questions surrounding the fact that he doesn’t like to talk with the media, Lynch took a picture of Robinson, welcomed fellow running back Robert Turbin to the table, listened while Robinson told Turbin about how all the backs were going to answer questions on his behalf, grabbed his stuff from under the table and left … by climbing over a chair.
Clearly, he couldn’t wait to get out of there, even more than he couldn’t wait to get out of Media Day on Tuesday.