Photo credit: John Leyba
Author: Jon Kuzma
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Oakland Raiders Running Back Marshawn Lynch started off 2017 very slow but by the end of the season things had completely changed. Lynch started to show frequent glimpses of the player he once was with the Seattle Seahawks and Buffalo Bills. Ultimately that caught the eye of Jon Gruden and compelled the new Raiders coach to keep Beast Mode around. The same couldn’t be said for Michael Crabtree so that tells you something. Clearly Gruden believed Lynch could be a huge asset to his football team. Especially if the 5x Pro Bowler can recapture the form he was in back in 2013 and 2014. Both of those season Lynch led the entire NFL in rushing touchdowns scoring 25 TDs over that two year span. We’re talking about a guy who can carry the entire workload on his back. The physicality Lynch brings to a team’s running attack is unmatched. Gruden and the Raiders will have to tap into all that in Marshawn Lynch’s second season in the Bay Area. The key will be getting Lynch at least 20 carries per game. It takes an abundance of touches to get the 32 year old going but if Oakland is committed to that course of action they’ll receive great returns from Lynch. It should be noted that the Raiders also added Doug Martin so between Lynch and Martin this team has a serious running back tandem. Gruden is a smart coach so he is going to make those two players the main components offensively. Expect Lynch to be the bell cow and now that he’s back in the swing of things he should be even better this season. There’s no rust on Lynch’s game and the hunger is clearly there for number 24. Marshawn Lynch is going to defy the odds and have a lot of success. Which usually doesn’t happen for running backs over 30 years old.
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Marshawn Lynch really started to get it going at the end of last season.