By John Boyle
Marshawn Lynch has not been in attendance during voluntary organized team activities, which hardly comes as a surprise seeing as he has regularly skipped such workouts during his time in Seattle. But next week Lynch plans to be absent when the word voluntary is replaced with mandatory. According to ESPN’s Terry Blount, Lynch is expected to skip next week’s minicamp because he wants a contract extension.
The report quotes an anonymous source saying: “It’s very, very unlikely that Lynch will be there. He wants the Seahawks to renegotiate his current contract and provide him with more up-front money.”
Lynch is set to make $5.5 million in 2014 and is in the third year of the four-year deal he signed with Seattle after the 2011 season, and while that is very good money for a running back, he’s likely seeking more up-front money because he realizes there is a good chance he won’t see year four of the deal as it is currently structured. As good as Lynch has been for the Seahawks—he has rushed for 4,041 yards and scored 39 touchdowns over the past three seasons—running backs tend to not age well as they approach 30, and with a $9 million cap hit in 2015, when Lynch will be 29, it has been widely speculated that the Seahawks will either move on from Lynch or ask him to take a pay cut.
If Lynch does indeed sit out all three days of next week’s minicamp, he’ll be facing a fine of nearly $70,000.
Ultimately it’s hard to see Lynch holding out into the season considering the value of his current deal, but this could provide a bit of a distraction if his desire for a new deal is strong enough to keep away when training camp begins in late July.
The Seahawks conclude OTAs Thursday, so assuming Pete Carroll is available to the media, we’ll perhaps get a little bit more clarity on the situation.