Last week, there were rumblings coming out of Seattle that retired RB Marshawn Lynch had gone to the team to ask that he may come back to the NFL but be released or traded to the Raiders by the Seahawks who still own his rights. This rumor has grown some legs over the past week, and it looks like it is only a matter of time before Lynch officially goes to Oakland. Lynch is from Oakland and even played college football for nearby Cal Berkeley.
Marshawn Lynch is one of the most aggressive runners the league has ever seen, gaining yards after contact with ease throughout his career. He is a Super Bowl Champion, and some people believe if head coach Pete Carroll had handed him the ball off from the 1 yard line in the final minute of Super Bowl 49, the Seahawks would have been back to back champions. But Carroll opted to have QB Russell Wilson throw on a slant route that was intercepted by Malcolm Butler and the rest is history. Lynch played one more season after that before retiring last season.
There were a few whispers of Lynch moving to Oakland last season, but that never developed. He went off into the sunset and the Raiders moved on with their RB corp. But this year, with the Raiders’ starting RB Latavius Murray opting to sign with Minnesota in free agency, the Raiders have an opening at the starting RB position. And with the offensive line being one of the best in the league, Oakland is in a great position to have Lynch come in as the starter and hopefully preserve his body through the season, limiting the amount of hits he takes. 2nd year RB’s Jalen Richard and Deandre Washington will have a lot to do with that as well, as they both played heavy snaps behind Murray last season, both averaging a better ypc average (5.4 and 5.6) over him (4.0). Murray can take what the line gives him but not much more. Marshawn Lynch is known for dragging defenders with him as he fights for extra yardage.
If and when Lynch does eventually land on the Raiders, it will give the Raiders yet another offensive weapon outside of their WR duo of Cooper and Crabtree, as well as newly signed TE and Packer playoff hero Jared Cook. If the Raiders can address their issues in the secondary by the time the season starts, the Raiders will have improved on both sides of the ball for a 3rd straight season. It looks like the culture in Oakland has really changed for the better and Lynch would be another piece for a team that is ready to compete at an elite level for the immediate future.