The Raiders have one more year in Oakland, and it turns out that Beast Mode might have one more year in him as well.
It was thought that Marshawn Lynch had retired for a second time last Wednesday, just one day before the NFL draft.
After two seasons playing for his hometown Oakland Raiders, Marshawn Lynch is not planning to play football again, league sources tell ESPN.
Now, with the three-day draft kicking off Thursday night in Nashville, the Raiders have one more potential need to address: running back.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 24, 2019
But plans reportedly have changed in a week’s time, and Lynch might be back for a third season with his hometown Raiders.
Steve Wyche of the NFL Network reported Wednesday that if the team wants him back, Lynch would return in 2019.
“Now it’s just a decision that Mike Mayock and Jon Gruden have to make if they want to bring him back,” Wyche said in a segment on the network.
Lynch’s two-year contract with Oakland ended after the 2018 season so a new deal would have to be agreed upon. He finished last season on injured reserve after hurting his groin in October.
While Lynch might want to return, it’s unclear if the Raiders want him back. The team used one of its three first-round picks on running back Josh Jacobs of Alabama.
Free agent pickup Isaiah Crowell seemed to slot in as the No. 2 running back, but he tore his Achilles earlier this week and will be out for the season.
In response, the Raiders brought back Doug Martin, who led the team in rushing last season. Martin had remained unsigned in free agency following the 2018 season.
It’s clear that if Lynch were to return, it would only be for the Raiders and only the Oakland Raiders. He loves Oakland more than he loves the team, and no other city could have lured him out of his first retirement in 2016.
Last year, Lynch went to the Oakland City Council, in flip flops and shorts, to make a plea to keep the Oakland Athletics in the city.
“We’re losing the Warriors. We’re losing the Raiders. Best not lose the A’s. Appreciate it,” he said.
Lynch turned 33 years old last week, which is ancient for a running back but still younger than the Washington Redskins’ Adrian Peterson (34) and the Buffalo Bills’ Frank Gore (36).
Lynch could also hit some important milestones with a return as he is seven touchdowns away from joining the 100-touchdown club.
He currently ranks 29th all-time in rushing yards, and passing a couple of Hall of Famers on the career list would strengthen Lynch’s own Hall of Fame candidacy.
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