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The birth of Beast Mode unveiled in new Madden commercial with Marshawn Lynch

By Josh Kerns/

When it comes to Beast Mode, should Marshawn Lynch’s amazing talent be credited to nature or nurture? Chalk it up to a couple of decades of the Madden NFL video game, at least according to a hilarious new commercial for the 25th Anniversary edition of the seminal football game.

In the spot titled “Running Back Sons,” posted Monday on YouTube, the Seahawks’ star running back and fellow NFL star Arian Foster, of the Houston Texans, portray their fathers playing Madden for the first time back in the 1980s.

Lynch is barely recognizable as his dad, sporting a killer 80s Afro, Coke-bottle glasses and styling clothes of the era. “They realize if they raise sons to be elite NFL running backs, they can use them to school each other in Madden,” says the tongue-in-cheek overly dramatic narration.

The rivalry between the two dads continues into the following decades as they push their sons through unique training, like forcing a young Marshawn to run over a bear and through a set of flaming tires while they continue to battle in the video game.

The commercial ends with the aged fathers still going at it 25 years later as they relax in a hot tub.

A separate feature from EA Sports offers a fun, behind-the-scenes look at the making of the commercial. It includes shots of Lynch getting his 80s makeup and wardrobe and then his stunning transformation into a graying, dreadlocked dad 25 years later.

Seahawks QB Russell Wilson is also featured in an upcoming spot for the game, but it has yet to be released. Madden 25 goes on sale Tuesday, Aug. 27.