Why mute Marshawn is wrong

This is my Thursday column on Marshawn Lynch.

Should you care that Marshawn Lynch refuses to talk to the media?

Yes, you should. He’s not honoring his contract, the standard player contract which mandates talking to the media.

I understand not caring. Fans don’t like the media. If Lynch wants to bail on interviews, that’s his business. He earns $5 million per year. He can afford to pay the fine. But he’s giving you the shaft and passing his responsibility to teammates who now have to talk endlessly about him. That goes for Super Bowl Week and that went for the entire season.

Lynch took a vow of silence this season, did not talk to the media at all. The NFL fined him $50,000, but rescinded the fine hoping Lynch would participate in interviews before the Super Bowl. If he did not participate, the NFL would fine him $100,000.

So, he participated. Sort of.

On Tuesday, Lynch walked away from reporters after mumbling short answers to their questions for fewer than seven minutes. The NFL did not fine Lynch. It supported him. Its official statement was, “Players are required to participate and he participated.”

The Professional Football Writers of America flipped and wrote its own official statement: “(We are) extremely disappointed in the lack of meaningful access to Seattle running back Marshawn Lynch at the Super Bowl XLVIII media day on Tuesday. Several of our long-standing and high profile members were appalled by Mr. Lynch’s conduct and refusal to answer any questions. We find the statement by the league to be an affront to our membership.”

Lynch didn’t care. On Wednesday, he was even worse than he was on Tuesday. It’s like he developed lockjaw. Fullback Michael Robinson and backup running back Robert Turbin sat next to Lynch during the interview and tried to loosen him up. Nothing doing. Lynch mumbled, “I’m just here so I don’t get fined.”

Robinson, trying to bring out the humanity in Lynch, pretended to be a reporter and asked Lynch a question: “What do you think of your fullback? I hear he’s a cool brother.”

All Lynch said was, “No.”

Lynch garbled responses to a couple more questions, and then Robinson entirely took over the interview, became Lynch’s designated talker. Call him the DT.

Robinson tried to answer questions using Lynch’s words.

Why doesn’t Lynch like talking to the media?

“He just wants to play, Boss.”

What does Beast Mode mean? (It’s Lynch’s nickname.)

“It’s a lifestyle, Boss.”

How much does Lynch like Skittles?

“He loves his power pellets before the game, Boss.”

Whatever Boss means.

Lynch didn’t merely need Robinson on Wednesday. Lynch needed a puppet dressed up like him, a life-sized marionette reporters could interview. The Seahawks’ P.R. department could pull the strings and answer the questions. Or the Seahawks could pay Robinson to talk for him. That would increase his pay from a mere fullback. Fullbacks don’t make that much money, anyway.

For what it’s worth, no 49er has to be someone’s designated talker. No 49er is above or against talking to the media.

Even Colin Kaepernick talks twice a week, on Wednesdays and after games.

You would understand if Aldon Smith and Ahmad Brooks didn’t talk to the media this season – Smith drunkenly hit a tree with his truck and went to rehab. Brooks drunkenly hit a teammate over the head with a bottle. Those guys had tough questions to answer, and they spoke, answered questions all season. If you wanted them, they were there and polite and friendly. I wrote the 49ers should cut Brooks after his assault on a teammate in the offseason. Brooks never refused to answer my questions. He always accommodated me and other reporters.

Same with Frank Gore. All season, I wrote his legs were gone, but he always answered my questions. During the NFC Championship loss to the Seahawks, he rushed for 16 yards. In the quiet locker room after the game, he noticed reporters waiting to interview him. He quickly put on a pair of pants and an undershirt at his locker, turned around and answered questions.

Anthony Davis was the first 49er to answer questions after the NFC championship loss in Seattle. Earlier this season after the first game the 49ers lost in Seattle, Davis walked away from a group interview saying, “I hate these questions.” But he answered all the tough questions after one of the toughest losses in 49ers’ franchise history. He was a standup guy.

Michael Crabtree talked after the game, too. Crabtree always talks after games. He’s a standup guy. And so is Vernon Davis. So is every 49er.

Donte Whitner is the most standup. He “gets it.” He answers every question. He is the team spokesman. He understands talking to the media makes his life easier.

Lynch doesn’t get it. He got “it” at Cal when he was gracious and nice, but lost the idea of “it.”

Note to Beast Mode: You’re making your life tougher than it needs to be. By refusing to talk, you’ve made yourself the center of a controversy. Is that what you want?

The NFL should fine you. You’re trying to have it both ways – not say anything and still not get fined. I would respect you more if you stood by your position, if you blew off the media, paid the fine and continued your silence.

There’s something standup about that, too.

Grant Cohn writes sports columns and the “Inside the 49ers” blog for the Press Democrat’s website. You can reach him at grantcohn@gmail.com.

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  1. I wonder if Robinson will speak for him if they do a “Seattle Mix Skittles” commercial since Lynch just signed an endorsement deal with Mars.

  2. I don’t understand why the media makes something bigger than it really is. So what he doesn’t want to talk to you. Maybe he doesn’t have anything good to say, so he doesn’t say anything at all. Maybe he doesn’t want to end up apologizing for something. Or maybe he doesn’t want the media, AND YOU ALL ARE GOOD FOR THIS, twisting his words. I understand he signed the contract, but who cares he doesn’t want to talk to you all. Let that man be. He’s not taking attention away from his teammates, the media is forcing this story down our throats. Just let him play football and be a recluse. There are 10 other people that play on the field with him. Just like he saidc the fans are not upset one bit. He got them to the superbowl. That’s what matters.

    1. The two big storylines this Sherman Bowl, ooops, I mean Superbowl: One talks too much and another doesn’t. I’m not too bothered since they are Seahawks, but both have been a distraction for their team media-wise.

    2. I just don’t understand the obsession with getting this dude to talk. Then you have the ESPN media machine fueling it everyday. I’m sure only folks in Seattle knew he didn’t speak to the media until now

      1. I’m sure the fans in Buffalo knew that, too. I know a lot people don’t think much of the media, but you have to ask yourself: What would I be doing this very moment if it weren’t for the media? Even Benjamin Franklin realized its importance when he invented the printing press.

      2. Space! I love me some Ben Franklin, but Guttenberg invented the printing press, my brother, a long time before Electric Ben was born! But his Poor Richard’s Almanac is good stuff.

      3. KY, yeah, like talking to wife and kids, taking out the trash, replacing that lightbulb in the kitchen (me) that went out a week ago — but hey, we guys always know our real priorities! Man, what great excuses we come up with! Thank you, Grant, I just got out of a bunch of chores on my honey-do-list! LOL

      4. Brotha, actually the first the world’s first movable type printing technology was invented and developed in China by the Han Chinese printer Bi Sheng between the years 1041 and 1048. But, you know how history is written, lol

      5. Damn that Mr. Spencer! In 7th Grade he swore to me……! But yes, history depends upon who is writing it.

      6. Brotha, what field of science are you from? Pretty sure you’ve mentioned that science is in your background. Geology?

      7. A degree in Physical Geography. I was able to blend Geology, Climatology, and Hydrology to feed my retired surfer ‘Jones’. I’m still fascinated and spend as much time as I can at Pt.Reyes & Tomales Bay, but out of practicality I spent 20+ years in trucking wine.

      8. Brotha, I bet my youngest would love talking to you. She finally decided to be a naturalist after she couldn’t fit geology, geography, hydrology and zoology into one major though she is currently the director of education at a zoo here in California.

      9. Awesome, Space, on so many levels! I adore that she insisted on finding her own path on HER terms. UhRah!!! To me ‘Geography’ is looking at the whole world with open eyes and ears. I have a favorite niece who just published a paper as a grad student at SDSU. She’s an archeological researcher studying the Late Ice Age settlements in the Channel Islands, what’s left at the higher elevations. Early West Coast humans. I’m proud of yours and mine.
        Wow.Books that might possibly interest you. I was ethralled, but it’s personal: ’1491′ ’1493′.

  3. Great special on Jerry Rice on NFL Network tonight — Jerry, Joe, Steve,
    plus TO, Deion, Ronnie, Seifert, Mooch, Eddie D, Carmen Policy, even Glenn Dickey of the Chronicle all weighing in. What interesting, exciting years those were for the 49ers and us fans. No wonder I raced to the Green Sheet every morning.

  4. Lynch is what he is. Let the guy be. Who wants to talk to some self-important, self-aggrandizing media person anyway? Only interest they have is themselves and career advancement.

  5. Lynch is not and has never been a great communicator. I remember him speaking to a sports analyst after a Cal Bears win and he was at a loss for formulating words.

    Let’s face it, ML is a football player not an orator.
    I personally believe that he has a fear of not being able to express himself verbally.
    But as a football player, he is a beast among men!

    1. And if he knows that can we respect the fact that he doesn’t want to make himself look like a fool. If he does speak and looks like a fool the media will still turn on him. It’s a lose lose all the way around. I could care less about the guy. I just think it’s dumb that players are forced to speak with the media.

  6. I think the animus from the press stems from Lynchs’ Jerry Gleason act. “What we have here, is a complete lack of respect for the law”, or rule in this case. If you’re not going to enforce the rule, maybe you should take it off the books…..

  7. “Note to Beast Mode:……..”
    OMG! Is Grant going all Alex(Mom) on us? Hahahaha!
    Also, my outrage meter is barely off of the low end peg. Grant doesn’t remember Mark Bavarro or Duane Thomas.

  8. Anyone with common sense could see that Marshawn was very uncomfortable in front of the camera. I lost all respect for the media. They would do anything for the story, even if they hurt someone in the process. Leave the man alone and quite being a bunch of media bullies!

    1. That would hold up except for the fact that Harbaugh, Kaepernick, and Crabtree (just to name a few) aren’t comfortable talking in front of the media but do so because it is part of their job. Whether the media is sugary candy or a pack of voters doesn’t excuse Lynch from not doing a job requirement.

  9. A further example of which franchise has class and which one is made of pure sh!$. Thanks for this article Grant. It makes me even more proud to be a fan of the franchise with class, the San Francisco 49ers.

  10. In the pre-draft run up we tend to think in prototypical fashion. Big, tall, fleet receivers look great. Small, agile, quick & fast & elusive guys do too.
    Jerry Rice. 6-2?
    John Taylor 6-2?
    Chris Carter 6-2?
    Not everybody has to be 6-5/6-4.
    And YES; let’s check some Combine data.

    1. Different era. Richard Sherman is 6-4, 6-5 and fast. You need a receiver that be physical. The smaller guys just aren’t cutting it as “go-to” receivers

  11. I love the part about how offended the “high-profile” football writers were. Who cares what those d-bags with history degrees and overinflated egos think? Nooooooooooobdy!!!!

  12. Kaep has the potential to be an all-time great, but he needs coordinators and coaches who understand the passing game. Steve Young still talks about how he’d look to run first when he was a young qb because he had more confidence in his legs. He matured into a great pocket passin’ qb with touch passes I never thought he’d be able to throw. Young’s career in SF had Walsh and Holmgren, then Seifert and Shanahan. Kaep’s got Greg Roman and Jim Schembechler. Asking those two to teach you about passing would be like nominating Stalin and Hitler for the Noble Peace prize. You might get slapped.

    Kaep’s got a lonely road ahead of him – not like Steve Young. Steve had Jerry Rice to throw to while Jerry was in his prime. Young also had Holmgren and Shanahan as OCs. Young made the transition we all want to see Kaep make (from runner to pocket passer) because Young had the constant supporting cast behind him and the offensive philosophy was consistent and ingrained in the organization. Young was taught to deliver passes to skilled players who took the beating instead of Young, and it was pounded into his head. Holmgren took the torch from Walsh and Shanahan wasn’t going to put his own stamp on the offense. Kaep doesn’t have this luxury. Despite Harbaugh being a past NFL qb, Harbaugh’s offensive camp is divided (more like fragmented) and it certainly doesn’t help Kaep’s development.

    Think about how confused Harbaugh’s offensive philosophy is. We have Mike Solari as our offensive line coach who’s a WCO guy, schooled under Bobb. We have college spread players in Kaep, Crabtree and LaMicheal James. We have a power run offensive line and power back left over from the days of Scot McCoughlan. We have a qb who prefers the pistol. We have an OC who was a run game coordinator in college. Kaep has a WC / Power / Spread game to nurture his growth as a qb with an OC with no real NFL experience? Seriously? That’s like having Bill Walsh in one ear, Bill Parcels in the second ear and Chip Kelly in the third ear telling Montana to beat the Cowboys. No wonder Kaep can’t deliver in the clutch. The key to great qb play is getting into a rhythm. How’s Kaep going to get into a rhythm with all that ridiculousness? And to make matters worse, Trent Baalke can’t draft receivers. AJ Jenkins drafted when Alshon Jeffrey was on the board? Vance McDonald when Keenan Allen was on the board? Thanks Trent. Thanks Jim. Thanks Greg.

    This may all sound like I’m apologizing for Kaep, but man, I see a huge talent there. Carlos Rogers recently said he hopes Aldon Smith doesn’t waste his talents. That would be tragic. Ironically, I hope Jim Harbaugh doesn’t waste Colin Kaepernick’s talents. Jim just seems too stubborn to change.

    1. Well done Spitblood on the SF offense analysis. I think you have explained a lot of the inconsistency and clear lack of focus on the part of coaching etc. An offense by committee is not going to work. They need to iron this #$%# out and all get on the same page or we are back in the same stutter start for next year.

  13. The only way we got shafted was by your dad for getting you this job.
    “Professional Football Writers of America “???? There is nothing professional about you guys and the word “Writers” is stretched beyond recognition., Just bunch of vaulchers who twist and turn players words.
    Have you heard or seen the questions and people on media days in SB??? You call that professional???
    If he doesnt want to talk, he should be left alone. SB media questions and antics are just out of control and should be done with already.
    I cant stand him or his team, but you guys are way out of control with out an ounce of scruples.

    1. If you think there’s any perfect system anymore, think again. The closest thing to it is nature. Move to Alaska. Aside from that, if you want perfection, don’t look to man, entertainment, politics or society. I’m not apologizing for the Cohn zone. I like your fire towards those two jokers. And Lynch should be forced to talk… just to annoy him. He doesn’t get to play by different rules.

      1. The whole SB Media day, is outdated. Originally when Rozell came up with the idea was to create publicity for the league and lets face it, thats not necessary anymore. Lets face it, by the time these guys make it to the SB, we know almost everything about them. All that is left is people dressed up as pirates and trees and asking these guys if they prefer boxers or briefs.
        If the man doesnt want to talk or has issues talking to the media, leave him alone, there are a lot of players that would talk about their underwear or their favorite flavored ice cream.
        You know? The important questions.

  14. Here is my first mock draft:

    ROUND ONE

    TRADE: SAN FRANCISCO TRADES THE 30TH PICK (1ST ROUND) TO JACKSONVILLE FOR THE 39TH PICK (2ND ROUND) AND THE 101ST PICK (4TH ROUND).

    ROUND TWO

    TRADE: SAN FRANCISCO TRADES OLB AHMAD BROOKS TO SAN DIEGO FOR THE 89TH PICK (3RD ROUND) AND THEIR 2015 1ST ROUND PICK.
    TRADE: SAN FRANCISCO TRADES THE 56TH PICK (2ND ROUND) TO OAKLAND FOR THE 67TH PICK (3RD ROUND) AND THE 103RD PICK (4TH ROUND).

    PICK 39
    VANDERBILT WR JORDAN MATTHEWS
    An underrated possession type WR with great hands that can run routes effectively and cleanly. Has the capability to line up outside or in the slot and can be counted on to make the catch. Is a cousin to Jerry Rice.
    NFL COMPARISON: JAMES JONES
    SECOND OPTION: ARKANSAS C TRAVIS SWANSON

    PICK 61
    GEORGIA TECH OLB/DE JEREMIAH ATTAOCHU
    An excellent pass rusher that is also capable of bull rushing an offensive linesman and would be a great complement to Aldon Smith. Has shown a great capability of diagnosing the play, especially screens, and is an underrated run stopper. Has a strong work ethic and will play until the whistle blows.
    NFL COMPARISON: O’BRIEN SCHOFIELD AND KAMERION WIMBLEY
    SECOND OPTION: WISCONSIN WR JARED ABBREDERIS

    ROUND THREE

    PICK 67
    NEBRASKA CB/SS STANLEY JEAN-BAPTISTE
    A physical specimen that excels in man coverage. Is willing to dole out punishment to those who try to test him and makes a receiver have to earn the catch. Has the ability to make a big play if he intercepts or recovers the ball.
    NFL COMPARISON: UNKNOWN AT SAFETY
    SECOND OPTION: FLORIDA DT DOMINIQUE EASLEY

    PICK 77
    UTAH CB KEITH MCGILL
    A raw but very athletic playmaker who could just be scratching the surface. Is able to play in press or man coverage and can break up plays even when out of position due to his length. Decent backpedal despite just recently converting to the CB position.
    NFL COMPARISON: RICHARD SHERMAN AND BRANDON BROWNER
    SECOND OPTION: SOUTH CAROLINA WR BRUCE ELLINGTON

    PICK 89
    IOWA TE C.J. FIEDOROWICZ
    A big man that is one of the draft’s best blocking TE prospects and can easily give Vance McDonald a run for his money. Won’t wow anybody with his speed or athleticism, but makes up for up for it by utilizing his size and physicality to box out the one(s) defending him and then running through the others that are trying to stop him. Could be an excellent third down and red zone option in the passing game with his soft but strong hands.
    NFL COMPARISON: HEATH MILLER
    SECOND OPTION: FLORIDA CB JAYLEN WATKINS

    PICK 94
    FLORIDA CB JAYLEN WATKINS
    A scrappy playmaker with great ball skills. Very fluid and has a smooth backpeddle that allows him to stay with his assignment, but possess enough speed to recover if his assignment shakes him or avoids the jam. Needs to add some meat on his bones, but has the frame to do so. Very coachable.
    NFL COMPARISON: UNKNOWN AT CB
    SECOND OPTION: TEXAS WR MIKE DAVIS

    ROUND FOUR

    PICK 101
    STANFORD DE JOSH MAURO
    A quality high-effort player who has the versatility to also play at DT and NT. Powerful in his block-shedding technique and can use his long arms to disrupt passing lanes.
    NFL COMPARISON: BRETT KEISEL
    SECOND OPTION: SAN JOSE STATE QB DAVID FALES

    PICK 103
    SAN JOSE STATE QB DAVID FALES
    A tough passer that has the best touch and footwork of the QB prospects. Deadly accurate to where he can fit the ball in tight windows. Great decision-maker and has the ability to put the pass where only his receiver will catch. Has great footwork along with the ability to escape pressure in the pocket. Has the intangibles needed to be a starter and could wrench the role from from a struggling or injured QB.
    NFL COMPARISON: A YOUNG TOM BRADY
    SECOND OPTION: OLE MISS WR DONTE MONCRIEF

    PICK 125
    RUTGERS WR BRANDON COLEMAN
    A raw project that has the tools needed to break out in the NFL. Though not a speed demon, is surprisingly elusive for a man of his stature and can be classified as a legitimate deep threat.
    NFL COMPARISON: JOSH GORDON AND ALSHON JEFFREY
    SECOND OPTION: AUBURN CB CHRIS DAVIS

    ROUND FIVE

    TRADE: SAN FRAMCOSCO TRADES THE 158TH PICK (5TH ROUND), THE 189TH PICK (6TH ROUND), AND THE 222ND PICK (7TH ROUND) TO BALTIMORE FOR A CONDITIONAL 2015 4TH ROUND PICK.

    ROUND SIX

    ROUND SEVEN

    PICK 219
    TOLEDO RB DAVID FLUELLEN
    A workhorse with a long wingspan that is the best pass-catcher of the RB class. A long-strider with great cutback vision and that has the power to fight for extra yards.
    NFL COMPARISON: MATT FORTE
    SECOND OPTION: OKLAHOMA STATE WR JOSH STEWART

    PICK 220
    OKLAHOMA STATE WR JOSH STEWART
    A speed demon that excels in the slot and makes his mark as a solid punt returner.

    I know that I am going to catch flak for trading Brooks, but the team has a fairly large numbers of key personnel that will be eligible for an extension or a new contract either now or the next offseason, so the money will need to come from somewhere. Trading Brooks would give the team an extra $5.15 million in 2014.

    1. Ah yes, I’d forgotten how much you love the trades! :-P

      Good stuff MidWest, and very elaborate as always.

      I’m not against trading Brooks. When they re-signed him I said they should look to trade him in a couple of seasons. He’s good, but not great, and is expensive to keep. Of course I have also been saying they should draft another pass rushing OLB/ DE high for the past two seasons so they would have someone ready to replace him… Not sure Lemonier is there yet. Taking Attaochu softens the blow, but I actually really like your second option there as well – Abbrederis is really under-rated.

      Big fan of Jordan Matthews, but not necessarily that enamoured with some of the other picks. They are better off taking an actual safety than trying to convert Jean-Baptiste in my opinion.

      Personally I don’t think they should pass up a first round pick this year – lots of talent so a premier player will probably still be available. While I like Matthews he’s a 2nd tier prospect with only good not great athleticism. I’d prefer they move up a few slots in the first round to get one of the top WRs – Beckham or Robinson would be my picks.

      1. Thanks for the feedback Scooter.
        My thinking behind converting Jean-Baptiste is that the team can sign a strong safety to a one year deal during FA so that Jean-Baptiste can learn the position.
        I will admit that Matthews is my draft crush this year, but he also fits the possession WR mold that Kaep trusts. I also believe that this is a draft that will be extremely hard for the Niners to trade up in because too many teams want a WR, so I suspect that a team that missed out on grabbing their targeted QB in the first round will want to trade back up into the first round to get him, and an extra pick is better than nothing.
        I’m not really too pleased with how my mock came out, but this is what I believe will be available to the team with each pick.
        One thing that surprised me is the buzz on CB Jaylen Watkins. According to what I read, he left a very positive impression at the Shrine Bowl and could have pushed his self into second round consideration.

    2. Mid,

      wow that is a lot of stuff happening. If only the real draft was like that more often. Very entertaining. You put a lot of thought into that and I enjoyed it. Good stuff.

      1. Thanks Rocket. I do my best to ignore what I want to see the team do and istead choose what is the right move or fit for the team with what I believe will be available at each point.

  15. Ok, my pre-combine WR ratings (since we all seem keen on a WR).

    1. Sammy Watkins
    2. Allen Robinson
    3. Odell Beckham Jr
    4. Marqise Lee
    5. Mike Evans
    6. Davante Adams
    7. Jordan Matthews
    8. Brandin Cooks
    9. Jared Abbrederis
    10. Kelvin Benjamin
    11. Jarvis Landry
    12. Paul Richardson
    13. Donte Moncrief
    14. Robert Herron
    15. Martavis Bryant

      1. Benjamin is fairly raw than the other prospects so I think that 10 is about the right spot for him.

    1. Not arguing, because you may have watched more tape than I have but interesting. You have Beckham (who I like) a little higher than I expected and Benjamin lower. Im still making up my mind on Abbrederis; he may be a decent move the chains guy.

    2. Scooter,

      I like the fact you moved Benjamin down. While he is a physical freak, I have many concerns about his production at the next level. He really doesn’t run good routes or many of them and seems to drop more passes than he should. He’s somebody who scares me a little as I could see him not panning out. Obviously he could also turn out to be another Roddy White or something too, but the more I watch and read about him the more I want the Niners to stay away.

      Allen Robinson is a player that I think will move up the boards as we get closer to the draft. Really good in every area. The one guy I might have a little higher than you do is Landry. I think Landry is a WR who can be effective in the short and long passing game and runs very good routes.

      Really deep group of WR’s this year though that’s for sure.

      1. Yeah, the guys I had the most trouble slotting were Evans, Benjamin, Cooks and Landry.

        I actually think I’ve slotted both Evans and Benjamin too high if you base it on current skills, but their sheer physical presence makes them intriguing prospects. In the end I think both guys will be over-drafted.

        Cooks I like but he’s a small, shifty guy that relied a lot on catching short throws and making something happen with the ball in hand. Not saying he didn’t also show an ability to run routes, get open and make plays downfield, but the underneath stuff was a large part of his diet. Those types of guys don’t tend to have that same kind of success in the pros, and he can struggle with press coverage, so he may not be the WR his college production suggests.

        Landry is a smooth WR and will make somebody happy. He’s a guy that should be a good complementary guy. In other drafts he’d rate higher, but I found it hard to move him further up the list. You could argue he’s better than Abbrederis (and Benjamin), but I think Abbrederis is one of the most under-rated WRs in this draft. Great route-runner and faster than he gets credit for. If he had played with a QB that could actually throw a deep ball with any accuracy he’d have been close to college football’s leading receiver.

    3. Allen Robinson is my draft crush. I hope he falls to the 30th pick. I also like Robert Herron for a third round pick. He could be our version of Percy Harvin. He is short, like 5’10, but has good weight, 200 lbs, and can run a 4.3 40. He will be better than Tavon Austin.

      1. Yeah, I’d be pretty darn happy if Robinson fell to #30. I think the combine might play a pretty big role in how the WRs shake out in the end. So many good ones I wouldn’t be surprised if combine stars go first.

        I agree on Herron, I think he is the closest thing this year to TY Hilton.

        Just so much WR talent available it would be almost criminal not to take 2 of them in the first 3 rounds.

  16. I have nothing against Lynch. In fact I have always admired his talent and work ethic. Having said that, the dude barely speaks English. I’m sure he’s insecure about his inability to communicate so he refuses to be judged by members of the media. His refusal to speak at interviews should be a huge relief to the Admissions and Athlethic Departments at Cal Berkley. I hear he did well in classes there but I have to call BS on that. I’ve heard him speak on occassion and there is no way on God’s green earth that man could have ever made it into Cal without his football talent. Students who earn a 2200 on SAT’s and still can’t get in to Cal Berkley would be horrified to see that someone who speaks like Lynch took their spot. I know all colleges lower admission standards for athletes but cmon – There’s lowering standards and then there’s eliminating standards.

    1. I have some sympathy for Lynch. It seems there was a lack of positive example for clear speaking as he grew up. Remember that he’s from the community whose School Board thought it was appropriate to teach “Ebonics” as a language. I am NOT making this up. Yes, he probably is self-conscious about it.
      Early in Gore’s pro career I got a negative (& false) impression from his interviews that he was dumb. I don’t know what the strengths and weaknesses are in Frank’s mind, but the man is Football Smart and brings more than needed to his job with attitude and preparation.
      Uh, Cal’s ‘standards’ for athletes are pretty indefensible; especially for a public institution.

      1. just look at what happened to the florida state qb when he tried to speak to the media the public crucified him

  17. “I’m S.R., breh. Stay ready. Ain’t no getting ready.” — Marshawn Lynch, 1/30/14

    Comedy. I don’t get why he clammed up this season. He’s a natural.

  18. Excuse me…?
    Someone is holding up Kholin Khaperknick
    as a role model of how to ‘talk’….Really?
    and Maarshon Linccch is supposed to be impressed?

    Howzabout we watch a few pressers of some pro QBs:
    Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees;
    Please do not tell me that the Niners’ QB expresses himself
    with anything approaching the polish, the poise of these
    gentlemen. Stanford grad Andrew Luck in a press conference
    shows us what Kap missed by turning down Dartmouth.

    Question for Coach Harbaw: how many players on yr roster
    will use the offseason to finally earn their college BA/BS degrees?
    (Hint/Reminder: the “offseason” started 14 days ago….)

    1. All of this from someone who praises a coach who put the screws to USC and a CB that doesn’t know when to shut up.
      Quit talking about education when you you yourself can’t spell or use proper grammar.

  19. I wonder what any of this has to do with football because that’s the only thing I really care hearing or talking about when I come to a football blog. I don’t give two rat poops about whether someone talks to the media or not, why should I? You’re explanation makes me no more interested in what they have to say or why they choose not to say it. I still don’t care, in fact I’m almost 100% certain the only people who do are sports journalists so go complain to them about it because your words are falling on deaf ears around here.

    1. P.S. The absolute worst thing you can do Grant is turn into Ratto and this kind of article is right up his alley.

    2. And yet you were compelled to read the article and comment on it even though the title was very clear on the contents of the article. I would say Grant gamed you quite easily.

  20. In the wise words of Lloyd Christmas..

    “I don’t know and I DONT CAAAAAAAAARRRRRRREEEEEEE”!

    *regarding Lynch talking to the media.

    1. Very interesting.

      I really like Balwin actually. I would feel very good about our WR corp if we bring back Boldin for 2 yrs and draft a WR anywhere in the 1st-3rd round. Than that will give Crabs/Boldin/Patton/Baldwin/Rookie. I can’t wait to see what a Crab/Boldin combo looks like for a full season.

      And as I was saying I really like Baldwin. You can’t teach big and fast. I really hope they look to develop him this offseason and utilize that talent. I think I’m actually more excited about this year than I have been the past few years.

      1. You like him why? Because of his size on a stat sheet? He’s been in the NFL for a couple of years, got a fresh start and still couldn’t get more playing time down the stretch than Patton who is a rookie.
        That doesn’t give me much hope.

    1. From what I’ve read, he has good but not great hands and can get lazy in his route running. Any truth to this from what you have seen Grant?

  21. Speaking to the media, or anyone else, is a personal decision, not an NFL or media decision. Get over it.

  22. Media is pretty stupid, asking questions about strip joints and nothing about football. Some of the media is not necessary, take away 25% of them, no one will miss them.

  23. note to Mister Harbaw:
    everyone agrees – it is all about winning.
    If you keep on winning games,
    then you can say anything to the press
    (hint: gobble-gobble-gobble…)
    However, as soon as you lose…
    as soon as you “go out early”…
    you suck eggs, sir.

    So if Lynch/Sherman/Wilson/Carroll win…
    then they are champions. If not… well then
    they might as well join you at Pebble Beach.

  24. Little known fact: 49er cheerleaders make 5 mill a year. Poor Raiders girls.

    (yeah,I stole from Letterman)

  25. N.Y. Post story from Kap. He says that if he had thrown the ball to Crabtree a bit higher! Sherman would be the goat. Note to Kap. The problem was, you were trying to hard to make Sherman the goat. As far as I’m concerned, you’re the goat. The throw was stupid.

    Kap can keep discrediting Sherman all he wants but stats don’t lie. Kap needs to look at his against Sherman and choose his battles a bit more wisely next time. Kap has little to no success against Sherman. I wish he had waited for a different opportunity to show Sherman up. Maybe like a slant to Boldin when we are ahead by a TD in a game next year!!!

    Kap has no room to discredit Sherman’s game or his efforts against us. So far, he’s kicked Kap’s azz! And yes, everybody knows I’m a fan of our QB. He needs to shut up about Sherman. Sherman owns him and yes Kap, looking at that 4th quarter, it kinda looks like you choked to me.

    1. Damn… I hate to agree but my thoughts exactly… Sherman is clearly in Kap’s head. I’m most disappointed by the fact that he truly believes that doing it again and again and again is a good idea. This is a sign of immaturity to me; man up, learn from the mistake and move on. Don’t let your ego bait you into the same mistake next year. The window is closing for vets like J. Smith and Gore so please use better judgment in the future!

    2. 23 Jordan,
      I’ve been tough on Kaep all year based on his play. I always liked him, but these statements are very unsettling. He’s not looking at himself and how he needs to improve as a pocket passer.
      He showed up Cam Newton with the whole Superman thing, and the whole Kaepernicking.
      He’s pouting like a little baby. There’s a lot of room for improvement and if he doesn’t see his flaws, he will never learn.
      He made the same mistake against two DBs. Jimmy Smith from the Ravens, and now Sherman, so clearly this is a trend.
      He always talks Crabtree at the extent of others. Why not take Vernon against any SS or LB.
      He better win it all next year or he’s gone.

      1. >He better win it all next year or he’s gone.<
        We all know you have an agenda about Colin, but that's not a cogent thought. Did Miami boot out Marino a couple of years after he lost his only SB? No, uh actually Dan's in the HoF. This statement is reminiscent of DS or Alex'(mom). Can we keep it in the neighborhood of reality, please?

      2. Fan,

        He won’t be gone and he doesn’t deserve to be. He’s a talented player and he’s our QB. He has to mature on and off the field. Don’t settle anything personal on the field at the expense of your teammates.

      3. He better win it all next year or he’s gone.

        Well at least you aren’t pretending you don’t have a personal agenda against the guy anymore.

    3. That’s my quarterback! I like that he said that..If Richard can get his talkin and gesturing in…So can Kap..You wanna be fearless as a QB..an inch or two..we’re talkin bout a helluva throw and catch

      1. Your has a loser mentality! He’s let Kevin Costner from Tin Cup!
        That kind of bravado cost the Niners the SB and the NFCCG.
        If he doesn’t change, we ain’t winning…

      2. No the loser mentality is to say Im scared of throwing at Richard sherman..and letting him talk smack on him..You beat me fine..u aint gotta talk too now. So for kap and crab..I hope it motivates them..even more than they already are..And no.. if Baalke,harbaugh dont change .we aint winning

      3. Fan,
        Your grammar has a loser mentality. “That kind of bravado cost the Niners the SB and the NFCCG.” That confidence got us to the Super Bowl and to the NFC Championship game. If he was your teammate, you would appreciate his comments. You wouldn’t let somebody talk about your family like that. Actually, you might. You seem like that type if dude. I personally think that it bothers you to have a black dude at QB. Your constant rants go way beyond constructive criticism and make you look like an ignorant red neck, yet you criticize Kaep for having a loser mentality. Go look into a mirror.

      4. QBs can’t let their emotions get the best of them. Look at Peyton Manning. He goes after the weak point on the defense.

    4. 23
      I rarely see things the way you do, especially when it comes to 49ers qb’s however i had the same exact reaction to the comments as you did. “afraid of our receivers”???? thats just the classic “oh yeah wel youre just scared” middle school playground talk. Last year after the SB loss Kaep went down to Atlanta with ricardo and AJJ (hey remember them?) to work on his speed (thought he had enough already) and to lift weights (for that all important QB benchpress contest) THIS YEAR? he goes to NY to run his mouth and badmouth a player who owns him (not to mention plays for a team that JUST BEAT YOU) Thrown a foot further and it was a TD? I dont think so there is a good article by Lynch breaking down the last play.
      http://blog.sfgate.com/49ers/2014/01/28/colin-kaepernick-should-he-have-thrown-that-final-pass-to-michael-crabtree/
      The most troubling part is that Kaep actually thinks that was a good read/throw/decision to make.
      Taken in a vacum it means close to nothing. but add up all the “dolphins hatgate” “the red headphones post game pressers” and the “play it aloof” attitute and i dont like the way the QB of my team is trending. I might be overreacting but to me telling a guy who just kicked ur a$$ that you are tougher than him just makes you look stupid. He just should have stuck with ” that rant was ridiculous” because it was

      1. If Kaepernick truly threw that ball to the wrong receiver because it was a bad matchup, then he surely would have heard about it from the coach. Especially from a coach like Harbaugh.
        For Kaepernick to continue to defend where he went with the ball tells me that this is where his coach WANTED him to go with the ball. This is where his coach is INSTRUCTING him to go when he gets that match up.
        I hope that Kaepernick and Harbaugh learned something from that sequence, but IMO it’s definitely a don’t hate the player, hate the game situation.

      2. Bay,

        You have to be kidding me right? Ever since JH got here, he’s been blowing smoke up players azzes and we always knew it was smoke. JH blew smoke up Alex Smiths azz for the time he was here and we always called JH out on it. So now that he’s defending Kap you believe it? Come on MAN!! JH knows that the throw Kap made was the wrong one and a bad one. He’s just defending Kap.

        I hope you know better than what you’re writing. JH has never criticized his players publicly. He’s not going to throw Kap under the bus. Kap made the wrong decision and I hope you know that. Most people on this blog know it. I’m sure JH knows it as well.

      3. Jordan,
        it’s not about what JH says publicly. It’s about Kaeps insistence that the play was the right play. If Harbaugh ripped him as a teaching moment behind closed doors, then Kaep wouldn’t continue to defend the play. I’m not defending the play, but I’m telling you that this young QB was coached to take that matchup and to throw that throw. Two mistakes were made. One, bad call, two the ball was underthrown.

      4. We will never know what JH told Kap after the play. What we do know is that Kap NEVER should have made the throw. He gambled when the odds were stacked against him.

        1. Sherman is clearly a better corner than Crabtree is a receiver.

        2. Sherman is taller.

        3. Sherman is faster.

        4. Sherman has owned Kap in 3 games with 2 pickes and a couple of deflections.

        5. Crabtree is not 100% and wasn’t going to beat Sherman to the corner.

        6. The game is on the line, we’re moving the football by staying away from Sherman.

        What was Kap thinking? I will always believe the decision to throw to Crabtree to beat Sherman was personal for Kap and Crabtree. They wanted to make an All-Pro with a big mouth, the goat of the game and humiliate him. He did it at the expense of the rest of his teammates and he has to go the entire off season and live with that.

        Vernon Davis knows what that throw to Crabtree was about. I’ll bet you that.

      5. Jordan,

        You have created your own personal scenario and have decided that is what happened. Do you not see how misguided that is?

        Look we are all mad at the result and wish it had ended differently, but QB’s are taught to take a one on one matchup if that looks like the best option. He did what he thought was right and was unlucky in the fact it was picked because it was tipped up in the air. The result sucked; the read was correct with the way most QB’s are taught to read a defense.

        I like that Kap is fearless. That is a great quality to have. He needs to improve his accuracy on the throw, but his attitude is right where it needs to be to be successful imo.

      6. Jordan,
        come off the ledge brother. I was there last week. Game over. Like Rocket I too like that Kaep is fearless. Experience will make him better. Next year cannot come fast enough….
        I am fired up to know that next year we have Ian Williams, and Tank on the line. Those two bolster a D line that will be one of the best in football. Especially now that Fangio is rotating them more.
        I am fired up to see Lattimore get his shot and hope that leg can hold up. I hope more than anything that next year collectively Harb / Rom and kaep can work passes to the running backs more into the game plan. Lots to be fired up about….
        While some are optimistic about V-Mac, I’d say I am cautiously hopeful for him to step up. Same for Patton. Roman has the ability to call specific plays for these guys to get them involved. I am hopeful that he will do a better job of that next year to accelerate their growth and Kaepernicks confidence in them.

        Lots to be fired up about…..

    5. JJJ,

      I’m a big fan of Kap and everyone on this blog knows it. Anyone that says that Sherman is not the best corner in this league is in denial. He’s the best and there is not a close 2nd. Kap needs a weapon not on this roster to beat Sherman. He needs some elite speed at the WR position. He does not have that right now.

      I hate Sherman as much as everyone else but I respect his game. He’s not invincible but Kap has not shown that he can make throws to anyone to beat Sherman in coverage.

  26. I feel bad for the guy. He clearly is extremely uncomfortable and anxious talking to the public. Funny how most people in society have an extreme phobia of public speaking, but as soon as it’s a celebrity we deem it offensive and rude.

    I feel bad that he’s being publicly chastised as an immoral ass for not doing something that he’s very clearly uncomfortable doing.

  27. Note to Colin Kaerpernick:
    Thanks for telling Bart Hubbuch of the
    New York Post about what you intend to do
    ” next year “… guess that means that your
    season is already over, huh? ” NEXT YEAR “…

    You aint got no swagger. You aint got no cool.
    And you certainly aint got no Lombardi trophy.
    …..next year my @$$…

      1. MW,
        can you picture it now. He sits in an empty room with a computer that sits atop a small desk. A folding chair and a jar of vaseline…. That’s it. Oh and a world of time on his hands.

  28. Personally, I’ve never been a big supporter of sports people shoving mic’ in a players face after big win or especially a big loss.

    Every team should designate a player (or a few) to be a spokesperson that handles all the pre/post game interviews.
    Not every player is destined to be a great/good interviewee.

    Sherman’ rant a couple of weeks ago may have been a big boon for the media outlets, but it was a shameful show of poor sportsmanship from my vantage point.

    Media is madly in love with sensationalism and controversy and the same holds true in the sporting world.
    Too many reporters try to pry rather than stick to the framework of the game.

    Sure there is a rule violations with Lynch not meeting his block of time interview, but the blame should be shared by both parties here.
    Players and reporters alike.

  29. …MidWestDynasty says…. dull.
    That is what Jim Harbaugh has in his gut;
    a dull feeling. Dull. D-U-L-L.

    … bayareafanatic describes an empty room.
    Harbaw’s entire universe feels empty right now.

    Gentlemen, I did not create this reality, however,
    as a dedicated Niner fan/heckler extraordinaire,
    I refuse to let go of the dead horse.

    The dead horse will be beaten… over and over and over.
    Let’s hope that Colin & Co. bounce back… “next year.”

  30. Bill Walsh was supportive of J. Taylor shutting out the media and if Walsh did’nt have a problem why should I?

    1. It’s a CBA detail now and part of player contracts, but Lynch has tried to ignore it instead of deal with it. Accept that you have to put time in and find a way to be so boring that nobody wants to talk to you. You know, he could answer every question with: “I can’t recall.”

  31. KNBR-AM (Kap interviewed in New York)
    [wearing a scarf.... looking chic] Ah hah.
    When asked about facing Richard Sherman,
    Kap says yes, I would throw that pass again.
    I do not play this game in fear. Hmm. Okay.
    Then, a short while later, when asked about why
    he was not doing more open field running earlier
    in the season, he admitted such plays were avoided
    due to fear of possible injury. So which is it, rookie?
    FEAR…..OR……NO FEAR? Please advise.

  32. If someone is man enough to admit that they aren’t able to express themselves very well, I can respect that. There is no need to make a fool out of somebody like Lynch who does ALL of his talking on the field.
    In fact, I wish he would SHUT UP when we play them………….

  33. Have to say I care nothing much for what the players have to say in any of the sports. 90% of it is cliches, and rest tends to make most of them look bad. The media overrates itself, it is just sports, and if some guys don’t want to talk the world will continue to spin on its axis. Maybe they won’t get some endorsements or a few media vigilantes won’t vote for them for some award. But the fans don’t really need to hear from the players, it has no impact on my enjoyment of any sport. They need to just get rid of that clause requiring people to talk to the media, it is just plain wrong. The coaches are really the only ones we need to hear from. Even a player like Brooks and A. Smith aren’t really going to say anything important after their off field stupidity. I am much more interested in their actions than their words.

  34. He participated, relunctantly. I felt bad though. You could tell that he was VERY uncomfortable. It made me wonder if he has some type of phobia or anxiety. In any event, there are policies and repercussions in place, he found a way to meet his obligations.

    Im ready for the 9er talk.

  35. Grant, The difference is that you are a reporter……. as one blogger here notes playing “Mr. Mom”…to get your needs as a reporter met.
    The 49ers are a more traditional, a more “corporate” bunch than the Seahawks, meaning they follow orders given down from on high. The Seahawks seem to do what they WANT to do and their coaches respect who they are and what they want to do. So they are in the end more REAL, more authentic than those who do what they “should” or are supposed to do. I see this as part of Pete Carroll’s (so called “new age”) coaching style…..to get players motivated to WANT to do well, to do what is in their interest and the team’s—-without any coercion. No threats. Pete leaves that to the league…..to fine guys like Marshawn for not talking. Notice Marshawn showed up “so he wouldn’t be fined”, not because coach Carroll told or asked him to… though Pete may well have reminded him about that fine and jokingly made it a suggestion, a request. I’m sure he was light about it ultimately & left the decision up to Marshawn. I just get Carroll is less about control than most…..including you and our 49ers organization.

  36. Some people are naturally afraid of public speaking – either they’re not great orators or just have a phobia, for some people this fear can cause all kinds of problems, including hyperventilation, sleep disturbance, stress, and seizures. It may be a problem related to childhood, we don’t know. I for one don’t think someone should be forced to step on a public podium and speak. Lynch is not a trained seal he is an athlete. Let him be and let him play. If it is a fear of speaking in public we certainly wouldn’t want his anxiety to affect his ability to play the game. and let’s remember, if he signed up to be an actor or a singer, that’s different, but he didn’t, he signed on to be an athlete.

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