Stretching the Field: Storm a brewin' in Seattle?
By Shawn Clarke, Contributing Editor
(SportsNetwork.com) - Remember when Marcus Camby complained that the NBA should give players a stipend for the league's new dress code?
Or when Latrell Sprewell demanded a new deal because he has a family to feed?
I certainly do and it still bugs me to this day.
When I'm pinching pennies and borrowing cash from my folks (God bless them), it makes me sick the nerve of some athletes and their outrageous claims. Today's athlete could use $100 bills as toilet paper, and yet they still want more, more, more.
Not all athletes are greedy money mongers. But there are some who want more zeroes before the decimal point in their paycheck.
Now Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch wants a fatter wallet.
Lynch reportedly told some teammates that he would consider shutting down "Beast Mode" if the Seahawks won the Super Bowl, an achievement which was fulfilled with a lopsided win over the Denver Broncos. According to NFL Media's Jordan Babineaux, he spoke with Lynch this week and came to the conclusion that Lynch wants more money and an extension.
Already getting paid as one of the top running backs in the league, Lynch has the right to demand more money and also to receive heavy criticism for it. He has the numbers worthy of a merit increase with three straight 1,000-yard seasons and five since breaking into the league in 2007.
The Seahawks have been generous this offseason in terms of shelling out the dough to keep their championship squad intact and it's not time yet for Lynch to put his hands out. Lynch probably has some other mouths to feed and can certainly do it with his current deal. If somebody wants more cheese on their Whopper, Lynch is going to have to squash the request at the drive-thru.
A colleague of mine said the Seahawks should pay Lynch in Skittles. While it's not realistic, maybe it would keep Lynch quiet.
If he stays productive and healthy another pay day will be coming. For now, though, Lynch needs to put his head down and continue to work. Babineaux noted in his report that Lynch is training as he usually would for an upcoming season and sports minds know life of a running back is an arduous one.
Lynch has made enough money in his career and hopefully he has a nice bank account when it's all said and done. Perhaps his recent temerity says otherwise.
I don't feel bad for these overpaid athletes. It's not like they're fighting overseas, curing cancer or keeping the streets safe. They're entertainers. That's it. And, yes, I understand the sports world is a multi-billion dollar industry and athletes inherit a share of it.
Will Lynch, who has stayed away from OTAs, put Seattle's title defense in jeopardy by sitting out? It doesn't seem realistic. But what is pragmatic is his possible absence at the team's upcoming mandatory minicamp and training camp.
"He has his own things going on," Seahawks center Max Unger told the Seattle Times. "We'd love to have him, but by no means would it change my view of him. Not at all. The guy has more than proven himself and shown he's capable of coming to training camp in shape. As long as he does his thing on Sunday, I've got no problems with him at all."
The Seahawks must not cave in to Lynch's desire for more money. He will be fined if he fails to show up at minicamp, which could ignite his interest for a new deal even more. Lynch is set to make $5 million in base salary this season and $5.5 million in 2015. The powerful back has $500,000 this season in roster bonuses and $2 million in 2015 bonus money.
With two years left on a deal he signed a few years ago, Lynch should just let it go and continue to keep the Seahawks one of the top teams in the NFL. If he chooses to stay at home chomping on Skittles and setting bad examples for other players, the Seahawks have promising runner Christine Michael in the fold and you won't be hearing any outrageous demands from him anytime soon.
Lynch is one of the best in the business and has proven that. Why else did the Seahawks take a chance and sign him to a $30 million contract? In time they could re-structure his deal as long as it doesn't break the bank, then both sides would be happy.
The quiet and soft-spoken Lynch may not be happy now and has to show the patience he exhibits when finding a gap to burst through.
While Lynch is not making any more fans for being disenchanted with his contract status, he can form new admirers by simply doing his job.
06/13 13:15:25 ET