Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch made it clear he only appeared at Super Bowl media day to avoid a fine from the NFL. It appears he succeeded, as the hat he wore during his press conferences was found to meet NFL requirements.
Continue for updates.
Lynch Won't be Fined for Hat by NFL
Wednesday, Feb. 4
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported Lynch won't be fined by the NFL:
Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News previously provided comments from Goodell, who spoke about the players' obligation to cooperate:
ESPN's Darren Rovell reported on the financial gain Lynch encountered from the attention his brand drew:
Lynch's "BeastMode" Hat Draws Controversy
Wednesday, Jan. 28
Adam Schefter and Darren Rovell of ESPN report the "BeastMode" cap he was wearing while repeating the same answer to reporters 29 times was not approved ahead of time. It was said the result could draw a large fine following the team's Super Bowl clash with the New England Patriots on Sunday. From Schefter's Facebook page:
Unfortunately, for Lynch, showing up wasn't the only criteria. Sources tell ESPN that, after the Super Bowl, the league will review whether the hat Lynch wore during the event was permissible. If the league rules that Lynch used Media Day to promote a brand that was not approved by the league, he could face a significant fine. NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy declined to comment.
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The ESPN report stated the hat is made by New Era, which is an NFL sponsor. The issue from the league's standpoint is that it wasn't given the green light ahead of time and is being sold separately on a clothing line site with a $33 price tag.
Rovell indicated that Lynch's agent hadn't heard from the league regarding potential punishment:
Lynch was once again wearing the hat on Wednesday, via ESPN:
On Thursday, Rovell reported wearing the hat has paid off for Lynch financially:
Terry Blount of ESPN passed along comments from Russell Wilson, who was asked about his teammate's choice in head gear and the potential of a fine:
It's also noted that Lynch is no stranger to paying the league money. He's accumulated more than $130,000 in fines just since November—$100,000 for failing to meet media obligations and the rest for grabbing his crotch after scoring a touchdown on two separate occasions.
Seahawks teammate Richard Sherman defended him in a column for The MMQB. He believes it's unfair for the league to put the running back in an uncomfortable position.
"Under [Roger] Goodell the league continues to put players like Marshawn Lynch in a position to be mocked by the media, which seems to get a kick out of seeing people struggle on camera," he said. "As teammates we're angry because we know what certain people do well and we know what they struggle with. Marshawn's talking to the press is the equivalent of putting a reporter on a football field and telling him to tackle Adrian Peterson."
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll also came to Lynch's defense in regard to his comments to the media, via Tom Pelissero of USA Today:
The stalemate will likely continue into next season and beyond unless the rules change.