Much like Sir William Wallace valiantly led the Scots into war against the English, Marshawn Lynch possesses an unmatched ability to lead his over-matched team to victory. Well, there was a point in time at least when he could claim those victories. Lately, things have changed. We've begun to see the William Wallace at Falkirk in Lynch -- the Wallace who met an ugly defeat and, eventually, his tragic fate.
Sure, when Marshawn Lynch wants to, he's able to carry 4 guys into the endzone from 10 yards out. He's also capable of falling to his knees as 4 guys tackle him on stretch runs. We're all well aware that he's a dividing force around here of late. The fanbase seems at odds between loving him and loathing him. Say what you will about his off-field misfortunes, Marshawn has been a tremendous asset to this team on game days.
Admittedly, i'm a big fan of the man affectionately known as "Beast Mode" around these parts, even though I consider Fred Jackson my favorite Bill. Saying that, "Bench Mode" is not my favorite persona of Lynch's. That's exactly where we're at these days with 23, and the seat's so warm they might not have to turn the Salamander on come winter.
Yes, Marshawn's heart on the field has been second-to-none. That was, at least until 2009. So what do we make of his situation, and I don't mean his legal troubles. What can we attribute to his drop in game-day emotion and effort on the field? Is it simply his weight gain, or has he lost the drive to carry the team on his back - an ability and desire he seemed to display early on in his career.
Some will say that it is Trent who has lost this team. Some will say that Trent quit on the them, and that he threw people under the bus in ways. I think the same can be said about Lynch. So, what can we as fans do to stay on his bandwagon when Lynch appears to want nothing to do with one? What does this organization do with a player who appears unready to step up? Yes it's early, but Gailey has stated they want everyone in the boat at the same time, and who wouldn't want that as a leader?
His absence from voluntary OTA workouts has me thinking about something. What if Marshawn's assence may be in part because the team doesn't know what they want to do with him, contrary to statements made by Gailey?
It's known that the Chargers need a full-time heavy-duty RB, and yes - we've discussed the Chargers in terms of dealing Lynch (for Merriman). What if the team is looking at the Chargers as a trade partner for a different player: Darren Sproles. Sproles fits the mold that Gailey is hoping to find. Lynch fits the profile of a player San Diego needs.
I don't know if I necessarly love the idea of losing him (actually, I don't like it one bit). I think this team is going to need 2 heavy-duty backs, so they'd fill one vocalized need and create another hole. The question here becomes which player is more difficult to find in the draft: a Darren Sproles (also a great ST threat) or a Lynch? I'm guessing it's a Lynch.
So why even discuss the this trade possibility if i'm not in support of it? Well it might just be that Marshawn wants nothing to do with this team any longer. He may be hoping for a trade, especially one that gets him back closer to him hometown. I'd say Marshawn Lynch is at a crossroads very early in his career. It's probably important for him to take time and think just what he wants out of life and the opportunities afforded to him in Buffalo.
The team needs him and his once-domineering play on the field. I hope he finds a way to remain a Bill, otherwise I feel he's fated to repeat Wallace's ultimate fate: to have his career proverbially hanged, eviscerated, beheaded, and quartered.
So which William Wallace will Marshawn Lynch channel: He of early glory, who knew no limits and was afraid of nothing on the field of battle, nor who's wits could be matched? Or will it be the one who grew tired and weary, unable to escape his enemies and opponents.?