The time may have been right for Marshawn Lynch to walk away from football after the 2015 season with the Seattle Seahawks.
But it’s also becoming evident the time is right for a Lynch comeback in 2017.
So far in Raiders training camp, Lynch looks like an energized, in-shape and committed athlete, ready not only to perform on the field but be a leader.
The 31-year-old running back has been running hard in practices. On Tuesday, Lynch took a handoff and churned hard upfield through a hole in the line, prompting quarterback Derek Carr to say later it seemed Lynch was ready to “run through some people’s faces.”
Earlier in the same practice, Lynch had a big gain that included putting an impressive stiff arm on would-be tackler Karl Joseph, the oncoming safety, reported Jerry McDonald of the Bay Area News Group.
Lynch isn’t likely to get any playing time in Saturday night’s exhibition opener vs. the Cardinals in Arizona – in fact, he may get very little action throughout the preseason games to avoid injury – but that doesn’t mean he won’t be ready. Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio, like Carr, sees a player who’s eager for action in 2017.
“He’s doing a great job, working wisely,” Del Rio told McDonald. “We’re bringing him along. We’ve been smart about it the whole offseson. He’s doing the things we’re asking him to do. He’s fully committed. I like the way he’s progressing.”
The Raiders have plenty of running backs to take a look at in preseason games. With Beast Mode, however, they know what they have. It’s just a question of getting him enough work to be ready for Game 1.
Said Del Rio: “He’s a very passionate player. I think of toughness and physicality. … He’s healthy and in good shape and ready to have a good year for us.”
The Raiders will open the regular season on Sept. 10 in Tennessee vs. the Titans.