According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the NFL is preparing to become much more aggressive in its battle against Marshawn Lynch and his continued refusal to give a fuck.
The league has dropped a $20,000 fine on Lynch for busting out his "hold my dick" celebration—a transgression that had previously earned him an $11,050 fine—during last week's NFC Championship Game. He is also expected to be fined for not speaking to the media after that game, and, according to Schefter, the league is preparing to hit him with massive fines if he doesn't speak to the media during next week's run up to the Super Bowl:
The NFL is considering fining Lynch "significantly more" than the $50,000 it has fined him in each of the past two seasons for not speaking to the media, something Lynch declined to do post-game again Sunday, per an NFL official.
Now, this is another issue that threatens to hang over the Super Bowl week with Lynch being required to speak to the media Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
An NFL official said there would be increasing fines for each session Lynch missed, with each fine being more than the two $50,000 fines already imposed and the upcoming one that soon is expected to be handed down.
This is so dumb. It's become clear that Lynch, for reasons he is under no obligation to explain, does not want to talk to the media. There are rules in place that state his behavior will result in fines, and if Lynch is willing to accept those fines, he should be free to go ahead and continue ignoring reporters. That's his choice! We can all be adults about this.
But the NFL threatening to ramp up the scale of its punishment seems to suggest that the league believes Lynch can be bullied into becoming a loquacious, media-friendly player, and that he just hasn't yet been punished hard enough to learn his lesson. This is the thought process of a bad parent who believes that if his or her problem child is sent to bed without dinner enough times, the kid will eventually emerge from their room yielding and subservient, a perfect little angel.
Forget about whether this strategy will work or not (it won't); exactly whose interests would it serve if it did? Outside of collecting some extra pocket change, it doesn't really serve the NFL's, and it certainly doesn't serve Lynch's. The league office would probably like us to believe that Lynch has been put in the crosshairs for the sake of the fans, but that's bullshit. Football fans get no value from Lynch being forced to sit uncomfortably at a podium during media day and mumble the same answer over and over again. This certainly looks like a nail getting hammered for no other reason than than it sticks out.
Watching a man painfully navigate a public situation he has no desire to be in does not improve the fan experience. You know what football fans do get enjoyment from? Watching Marshawn Lynch kick ass on the field. He's been doing plenty of that lately. Let Beast Mode live.