Marshawn Lynch finally gets quoted directly on his desire to retire: “I’m not playing football anymore,” he tells SI/60 Minutes Sports in an interview airing at 6 p.m. Tuesday on Showtime. Which should be the end of it — until the next rumor. Call it the the Favrian Syndrome.
Anytime an athlete retires with some tread on the tires, the belief always lingers about a comeback. QB Brett Favre burned that torment into the sporting consciousness with so much back-and-forth that he should have been given his own Waffle House franchise.
Lynch was not ambiguous in his interview.
“I’m retired,” he told interviewer L. Jon Wertheim. “Is that good enough? Which camera do you want me to look into? This one? I’m done.”
The segment released of the interview did not show Wertheim asking a vital, basic question: Why?
Injuries? Threat of concussions? Didn’t like Pete Carroll?
Alas, so much for the tradition of serious journalism on 60 Minutes.
At least there’s a few other tidbits in a transcription of the interview, but little Seahawks-related.
Lynch’s agent, Doug Hendrickson, was also interviewed, and explained he understood the speculation, especially for a return that had him play for his beloved hometown in Oakland.
“If you could write the perfect story as far as the last year of his career if he played again, come back to Oakland,” he said. “It makes sense, right? But the reality is he told me he’s done. Selfishly, I’d love for him to play another year or two to make sure he’s cemented in the Hall of Fame.”
Asked if no really meant no with Lynch, Hendrickson said, “With Marshawn, I’ll never say never, OK?”
So door is cracked, just enough for endless speculation. The fact remains that not even Lynch, once he’s been at retirement for a year or so, knows how he will feel about life after football. A lost season of training and contact will all but eliminate the option for any football player.
Then again, Lynch has proven endlessly his ability to do things no one else can do.
At least this interview had him saying in his own words he’s done. No cryptic image tweeted out during the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl. No rumors spread by former teammates.
Lynch is no longer ’bout that action, boss. He’s about talk. That might be his most difficult opponent.