Marshawn Lynch ends holdout, reports to Seahawks camp
Marshawn Lynch’s holdout is over, ending one distraction so far for the Super Bowl champions.
Lynch arrived at the Seattle Seahawks practice facility on Thursday afternoon following the team’s morning practice. The team confirmed Lynch had reported for camp, ending a holdout that spanned a week.
Lynch was caught by television cameras talking on his phone out near the Seahawks practice fields wearing a hooded "Beast Mode" sweatshirt and knit cap on an 85 degree day. He was later hanging out in the lobby of the facility.
Oh hi, guy pic.twitter.com/Q8Rd2RQTIm
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) July 31, 2014
ESPN reported earlier Thursday that Lynch was expected to end his holdout. FOX Sports 1’s NFL insider Mike Garafolo confirmed that Lynch would be back on the field within 24 hours of him reporting to the facility.
Garafolo has also confirmed that the Seahawks have taken $1 million that was available to Lynch in incentives this year and converted it to his base salary, which now goes from $5 million to $6 million. The team also essentially borrowed $500,000 from next year’s salary and made it a signing bonus this year.
Garafolo says the deal is a win for both sides. Lynch knows he’s got $6.5 million coming his way this season instead of a $5 million minimum. The Seahawks, meanwhile, get to say they added no new money to the overall deal.
The Seahawks will not go after the proration of his signing bonus they could’ve gone after ($255,000) and they’re still talking about whether to reduce the per-day fines ($240,000) for holding out, Garafolo reports.
Lynch is in the third year of a four-year deal he signed before the 2012 season.
Lynch must still pass his physical and be added to the active roster. Seattle’s roster is currently at the 90-man limit.
Seattle made clear on the first day of training camp that it had a plan in place before Lynch signed his extension and it was not inclined to stray from those plans.
"We’ve had a substantial plan working for us for years now and Marshawn was a big part of this plan," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said on the opening day of camp. "Just a couple of years back we made a big statement and made a big effort for him and we wish that he was with us now."
The dispute was building throughout the offseason with Lynch staying away from organized team activities and rumors that he would skip June’s mandatory minicamp in protest of his contract structure.
Lynch showed up for the minicamp in June to avoid a hefty fine. But he finally decided to make a stand with the start of training camp. He could be fined by the team $30,000 per day for each day of camp missed, plus a percentage of his prorated signing bonus.
Lynch has been the workhorse for Seattle’s offense since his arrival via trade during the 2010 season. Lynch has 1,066 carries for 4,624 yards and 41 touchdowns in the regular season since joining the Seahawks.
With Lynch away, the Seahawks have let Robert Turbin and Christine Michael get the bulk of carries during camp. That was already going to be the case during the preseason with Seattle wanting to keep Lynch healthy for the regular season opener against Green Bay.
Both Turbin and Michael have been impressive thus far with Lynch gone.
"The more guys that we have the better," quarterback Russell Wilson said. "To have a guy like Marshawn Lynch … is a good thing. We definitely want him on our team for sure."
NOTES: The United States Marine Corps conducted a demonstration after practice on Thursday that featured helicopters flying over the facility and dropping Marines into Lake Washington before coming ashore on the practice field next to the water. There was large contingent of military from all branches in attendance at Thursday’s practice. … Carroll said DT Jesse Williams has a "significant" knee injury suffered in practice on Wednesday and may require surgery. … Seattle placed TE Anthony McCoy (Achilles) on injured reserve and signed WR Ronald Johnson. … Rookie DE Cassius Marsh sat out Thursday practice with a sore groin muscle. Carroll said they believe it’s minor, but don’t want it to get any worse.