You are probably one of the millions who were very curious to see what Marshawn Lynch would say on Media Day at the Super Bowl since he didn’t answer questions any time throughout the season. Naturally, he didn’t have much to say, although he did loosen up a bit when he got away from the crowd and was interviewed individually (and briefly) by Deion Sanders. But then he spoke to the media again on Wednesday and the ugly truth shined through: Having to talk to the media is excruciatingly painful for him, which is why it’s cruel for the NFL to force it upon him.
Lynch didn’t have any sunglasses on for Wednesday’s session and the discomfort and sheer anxiety in his eyes were blatantly evident. Not only does Lynch not enjoy talking to the media, it makes him nervous. He was twitching and looking around frantically, not making eye contact with anyone except his teammate, Seattle Seahawks fullback Michael Robinson, who was there for moral support because he knew how tough it was on Lynch.
The bruising running back has no problem showing emotion on the field, but it becomes impossible when the cameras are in front of him and the media members corner him. Plus, Lynch’s extremely short answers to their questions made them speechless after a couple of minutes — they literally ran out of questions to ask him because he wouldn’t (or couldn’t) give them any decent answers.
The entire session can be summed up in one response by Lynch: “I’m just here so I don’t get fined, boss.”
Very well then. So why is he forced to do so? For starters, the league has rules about players making themselves available to the media, even if it’s against their will. However, Lynch brought up a good point for players like him:
“Y’all say y’all was the bridge from the players to the fans and the fans really ain’t tripping. So then, what’s the point? What’s the purpose?”
Lynch was responding to questions about why he doesn’t speak to the media and what he thought about fans taking up a collection to pay his fine for earlier in the year when he refused to speak to the media. But his point was more so about players like him than the relationship between the players and the media in general: It’s literally painful for him to take questions in an atmosphere like that.
No one knows and we’re not speculating here, but it’s very possible Lynch suffers from some sort of anxiety disorder that is exploited by lights, cameras and masses of people crowding him in a small space. Heck it could be claustrophobia, an anxiety issue or a combination of the two. We don’t know, but we do know Lynch doesn’t talk to the media because it makes him so uncomfortable that he can’t sit still.
So why is he forced to do it? Like he said, the fans ain’t really tripping and they obviously “have his back” because they took up the collection mentioned earlier. Basically, the fans don’t need the media to get to know Lynch, at least according to him. And if an experiment to prove that theory requires him to suffer, then that can be described as inhumane, right?