Marshawn Lynch, Seahawks fullback? It could be an option for 2020
One of the biggest stories of the 2019 NFL season was the Seahawks bringing back legendary running back Marshawn Lynch after the team’s three main running backs all suffered season-ending injuries in the team’s final few weeks.
Lynch’s return was a big morale boost for the team, as he signed just days after the team’s tough Week 16 showing against the Arizona Cardinals.
While Lynch’s yardage may not jump off the stat sheets – 30 carries for 67 yards in the three games – he was vintage Beast Mode near the goal line, scoring four touchdowns in the his three games. All those touchdowns were on runs of 5 yards or less.
Lynch is a free agent and turns 34 in April. He has already retired twice from the NFL, once officially by sitting out the 2016 season, then unofficially and going over 400 days without playing from 2018 to 2019. But if he were to decide to play again, could he find a role with the Seahawks in 2020?
The Seahawks will have starting running back Chris Carson, who has recorded two straight 1,000-yard seasons, back from the hip injury he suffered in Week 16 and his backup, 2018 first-round pick Rashaad Penny should be ready for the start of the season as he recovers from a torn ACL.
But there is a spot Lynch could play, and that is at fullback, where the team hasn’t had a consistent presence since Michael Robinson’s retirement in 2013.
Jake Heaps of 710 ESPN Seattle’s Tom, Jake and Stacy thinks it could be a good move for Beast Mode if he wants to do it.
“Marshawn Lynch being a fullback, I think, would be a lot of fun,” Heaps said during the show Tuesday. “And the reason why this is even an interesting question is because we know of Marshawn and his love for contact. And he has said before that he doesn’t just like to hit people a little bit or even once, (but over and over again) … That is a fullback mentality.”
The Seahawks currently do not have a fullback on the roster, as Nick Bellore, who played limited snaps on offense but was one of the team’s main special teams players, is entering free agency.
Seattle’s rival, the San Francisco 49ers, utilized fullback Kyle Juszczyk in a number of different ways in their offense (including in the Super Bowl), showing that teams can still use fullbacks with great success.
Even if the Seahawks were to offer the role to Lynch, though, it’s a matter of if he wants to continue playing.
“The question is at Marshawn’s age and coming out of retirement, does he want to subject himself to that kind of physicality every single game?” Heaps said. “That’s the question that you would then pose to Marshawn Lynch, but I think you’ve seen running backs transition into fullbacks before, and if anybody could do it and play well and do that role at a high level, I think Marshawn could.”
Watch the attached video at the top of this post for a more in-depth take from Heaps on the possibility of Lynch continuing his career as a fullback.
Want more conversations like this? Subscribe to the Tom, Jake and Stacy podcast by clicking any of the links below: