Pete Carroll joined Brock and Salk on 710 ESPN this morning for his weekly show, and had some very interesting things to say about Marshawn Lynch and some of the reports that have been written about Lynch's issues with the front office and coaching staff this season.
The latest came Sunday Morning when Ian Rapoport reported that the Seahawks still plan on move on without Lynch next year, regardless of how well he plays this season. The dot-connectors of the world, whether they're publicly dot-connecting and insinuating there's major strife because they have solid un-reportable inside information, or actually just dot-connecting or rumor mongering, have noted that Lynch may or may not have stayed out on the field during halftime of the Seahawks' loss to Kansas City as an act of protest for that report.
I don't know -- Lynch was getting work done on his back and perhaps did not want to go in to the warm locker room in fear that when he came back out into the cold his back would lock up. Or he could have been acting out in response to the report. I don't know.
Regardless, there does seem to be some substance to the idea that the Seahawks and Lynch don't see eye to eye, don't communicate, or have some tension behind the scenes, as Carroll noted this morning that they're "working through it."
Anyway, judge for yourself: Carroll went into some depth on the subject.
Here's what he said. I'm guessing that while reading between the lines, there will be varying and wildly different reactions to what Carroll is thinking when it comes to Lynch's future with the Seahawks.
We're working through it.
Marshawn is a very private person and we've all learned that and we've respected that about him for years. I respected the heck out of that when we got to the Super Bowl last year and everybody was clamoring and all that.
Carroll is referencing, I think, the media backlash that Lynch created when he refused to talk to them for the most part in the run-up to the game, other than this awkward-ass stuff here...
...and his now-legendary "just bout that action, boss" interview with Deion Sanders, below.
Carroll went on...
He is a very unique, special person. I think there continues to be questioning about this: he's doing great. He's busting his tail. I've told you and reported about how it's been so obvious that he came back so determined to be good and to be on it. He's done a tremendous job. He's played great football. I don't think he's ever played better.
This is undeniable. Lynch looks faster than ever, is running with ferocity, and the Seahawks' run game in general is clicking very well over the past few weeks. There are questions about his health, mostly related to his back, but his back has been an issue for pretty much the entire time he's been in Seattle, so I don't know how much of a factor it would be going forward.
Carroll then, unprovoked, started in on what happened over the summer when Lynch held out of training camp, shortly after Darrell Bevell proclaimed that the Seahawks would be a running-back-by-committee offense in 2014.
So all that under consideration, I think (it) still goes back to summertime, talking about the contract and stuff like that. There was some conversations that not everything always works out exactly the way you want it. So we will do everything we can to keep our guys with us. You know that we've done that.
Marshawn was the first guy we turned to way back then, because he deserved it, he had earned it and he had been the guy that had shown that special quality and that makeup that we cherished so much. The competitiveness and all of that.
Years later in the contract, you look at it, well, it's not quite the same deal. I think we had plenty of conversations about that in the summer time. He made his decisions to stay out and we respected that, too. We had no problem with that.
In other words, 'it's great you're outplaying your contract. But, you signed your contract.' I think everyone knows there's a double standard here, but it is what it is: there is a double standard between players and teams. Teams can opt out of contracts at any time with limited financial repercussions, but at the same time, teams expect their players to honor the contracts. Or, they project that in the media, anyway.
So as we're moving forward, he's giving us everything he's got and we're working through it and that's where that is right now. This football team is determined to do well. We still have a lot out there. This is a tremendous finish opportunity and Marshawn, hopefully if he can get back again this week, he'll be right in the middle of it with us."
So, lots of detail and more on the situation than we've seen thus far, but also lots of ambiguity in terms of Lynch's future with the team.