As the Seahawks reconvened for training camp last weekend, the usual drama followed them. And, as always, they were unfazed.
Not unexpected. Not a big deal.
Many expect the enigmatic running back to arrive at some point -- perhaps this week -- but it doesn't really matter. The Hawks have been preparing to move on without him for two years. It's why they drafted Robert Turbin in 2012 and Christine Michael and Spencer Ware in 2013.
Lynch has always been a self-serving maverick. To this point, his selfishness has never hurt the team -- even if it may have caused minor embarrassment to the franchise: his DUI arrest (pleaded down to reckless driving), his aloofness at Media Day (I know, who cares?), his goofy antics on Super Bowl parade day, his whimsical absence from the White House visit. Fans have laughed it all off and the ever tolerant Pete Carroll has put up with it because Lynch was "all about that action" on Sunday.
Well, he might not be this year. And the Hawks -- who are very unlikely to increase his $5 million salary -- are ready to move on without him if that is his choice.
At the Seahawks Town Hall in June, offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell caused a bit of an uproar when he mentioned the Hawks would be a running back by committee. He later clarified his remark to mean they were a committee in minicamp without Lynch there. But his words may have been prescient, because Lynch still isn’t there and they are still a committee.
As much as some fans and other observers might think the Hawks can't repeat without Lynch, the simple fact is they can as long as Russell Wilson is their quarterback and their defense plays like it did in 2013.
Assistant head coach Tom Cable made it clear last month that the Hawks can win without Lynch.
Cable said Turbin is fully indoctrinated into the zone running system and has learned to run efficiently, and Michael is more disciplined and accountable entering his second year.
"Whoever it is can go for a thousand. I'm not worried about that so much," Cable said. "What I'm worried about is being able to do the things that are necessary in terms of ball security, being the leader in the backfield, closing out games. And that’s one of the beauties of Marshawn. Hopefully he's with us. If he's not, then we move on. That's fine."
Lynch barely sees much action in camp and preseason anyway, so even if he doesn't report until just before the season opener, the Hawks will be fine. And if he doesn't report at all, they'll still be fine -- there just won't be any Skittles celebrations as the Seahawks march to the Super Bowl again.
Here's a look at the Lynch-less roster after the first weekend: