Friday, September 19, 2008
Lynch's session focuses on Bills' 2-0 start, this week's game against Raiders
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- It's been nearly three months since Marshawn Lynch last spoke with reporters. On Friday, and at least for one day, he ended that media boycott.
Lynch's self-imposed silence began after he agreed to pay a fine and apologized publicly in late June for a traffic accident that injured a pedestrian in Buffalo. The 22-year-old running back refused to talk about that incident Friday, focusing instead on football and the Bills' dynamic 2-0 start to the season.
"We can be as good as we play on Sundays, and right now we're playing good," he said. "We just have to continue to keep it up."
Along with quarterback Trent Edwards' efficient passing during the first two games, Lynch has gotten off to a solid start on the ground. A year after he topped all AFC rookies with 1,115 yards, Lynch has already rushed for a touchdown in each of the games after finishing his rookie campaign with seven scores.
Despite only 135 yards rushing and 3.6 yards per carry, Lynch has reached the end zone on runs of 11 and 21 yards, displaying his ability to break tackles and find the end zone in what he calls his "Beast Mode."
"I got in some intense workouts over the offseason," said Lynch, who swims on Tuesdays and Thursdays to help take some pounding off his body. "I feel a little stronger, a little faster."
Buffalo had been using running back Fred Jackson as strictly a backup to Lynch, but last week in its win at Jacksonville the two often found themselves on the field together, with Jackson lining up in various roles. That added dimension has already paid dividends.
"The offense that we have going on now with me and Fred coming out of the backfield, that's something that will be good for us," Lynch said.
This Sunday, Lynch will be going against the Oakland Raiders, the hometown team he grew up watching, and will have plenty of friends and family flying in for the game.
"It's special," said Lynch, who held a football camp for about 500 children in Oakland this summer. "If [my friends] are true Raiders fans, they should be rooting for the Raiders. But they're going to be rooting for Marshawn, too, so it's all good."
For the Bills, a win in Week 3 certainly will be. They haven't won their first three games since a 4-0 start in 1992, en route to the third of four straight trips to the Super Bowl during the Jim Kelly-Thurman Thomas-Bruce Smith era.
"We're comfortable with each other," Lynch said. "We're about putting up points."
And putting up early wins.