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Marshawn Lynch accepts plea-bargain to avoid DUI trial

Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Marshawn Lynch will plead guilty to alcohol related reckless driving as part of a plea-deal to avoid trail for his arrest on suspicion of DUI back in July 2012, reports ESPN's Terry Blount. Lynch gets two years of probation, must attend educational driving classes, and pay a monetary fine, but steers clear of a public trial, and may evade further punishment by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Lynch's attorney, Ivan Golde, speculated as such, noting, "I can't speak for the commissioner, but my feeling is Marshawn is OK and will avoid a suspension."

Lynch has run into trouble with the law previously, and has been suspended for it under the NFL's personal conduct policies, but DUI/reckless driving falls under the Substance Abuse policy. Had Lynch been convicted of DUI, the general first-offense punishment is a fine of up to two game checks. Seahawks RB Spencer Ware may be expecting this after he was arrested for DUI a few months ago.

Golde explains the decision to take a plea deal despite public declarations that they felt they had a strong case (and it seems they did at least have some benefit of the doubt, if the DA was willing to strike a deal): "We have a strong case for trial and could win the case, but the last thing (Lynch) needs is to go through a public trial. He's a Super Bowl champion and he has endorsements pending. For a guy in his position, it just doesn't make any sense to go through a public trial. He has a lot at stake here. You know Marshawn. He's not a media guy. It wouldn't have been good for him to go through all that."

"With the way the media is today, it would be tough for him to go through a trial like this," he continued. "It was better to plead to the much lesser charge, which basically is an unsafe lane change."