By now you’ve heard the news… Super Bowl 49 has come to an end. My beloved Hawks fell to the Patriots because of a crap call in the last 50 seconds of the game. The Patriots. This arm chair quarterback doesn’t know why we just didn’t let Lynch run it in for a game winning TD, but hey easy for me to say from the comfort of my couch.
Now to the real story – Marshawn Lynch and his distaste (distrust?) of the media. All season long this guy has been hounded at every turn including significant fines for not answering questions like “what’s your favorite color?” and “boxers or briefs?” (ok maybe not EXACTLY those questions, but nothing that will solve life’s mysteries that’s for sure). There are some people who think Lynch has committed high treason with this media avoidance. He has a contract, dontcha know. An obligation, even. He OWES THE FANS, or something. Of course ask any 12 (those would be Seahawks fans, in case you didn’t know) and we’ll tell you –
Leave. Marshawn. Alone.
I’m not going to pretend to know why he shuns reporters. Maybe it’s some sort of social anxiety. Maybe it goes back to his days in Buffalo, where he was allegedly victim to some bad press and ran into some legal trouble leading to suspension. Maybe, just maybe, it’s some sort of insidious plot to sell more Beast Mode hats. If so, it’s working. The hat actually sold out shortly after. Psst, get yours here.
No my friends, I’m afraid I can’t tell you why Marshawn won’t talk to the media. Can you tell me why it matters?
I’ve heard lots of arguments – there are “rules”, he’s setting a “bad example for kids”, and of course there’s always that pesky “union contract” as NFL players are represented by the NFL Players Association. Funny, on the other hand you’ve got a guy like Richard Sherman, who I guess talks too much - or at the very least is too unfiltered. The most interesting aspect for me is those who cry foul the loudest are the ones who hate the Seahawks the most. The Seattle fans are unwavering in their support of Lynch’s silence.
Last year I wrote about Richard Sherman and his trash talk – check it out here. This year I feel more of a kinship with Lynch. See, I used to be quite the loudmouth. No filter, wore my emotions on my sleeve. Talked shit all up and down the blogosphere and thrived on the chaos that came with it.
Then I got divorced.
I’m not going to kid you guys, the last 12 months have been filled with highs and lows I never would have imagined. Through it all I’ve maintained my career, tried to shelter my children from the worst of it, and picked up the pieces of my life as best I knew how. I was fortunate to discover a support system I never knew I had. I survived. Through it all, though, I shut myself off from much of the outside world. No blog posts. Very few tweets. Carefully protected Facebook updates. Even still, I was constantly barraged by nonsense from people from my past, masquerading as “Bob Johnson” or “Sue Smith”, trying to cause drama professionally as well as personally.
Can you blame me for putting myself in time out?
I’m not suggesting Lynch was the victim of domestic violence, like I was. Or that he was cyberbullied by a crazy ex and former in-laws, like me. Regardless of his reasons, I get the overwhelming desire to just do your job and stay out of the limelight. I’ve spent the last year working really hard and leaving everything on the placement field. I’ve made critical hires for my company and won more than I lost. I did more than my share during a tough season. What mattered most was coming home to my family and knowing they were safe, knowing I was surrounded by the people who love me and know me best. Just like Lynch.
You’ll understand if I didn’t feel the need to stand at the podium.