By now, you know all about Marshawn Lynch’s media day antics, but believe it or not, the day was about much more than the stubborn Seattle running back who stonewalled reporters.
In fact, it was about much more than DeflateGate, too.
“With all the controversy that has surrounded the New England Patriots over the last week, week-and-a-half, it seemed to be removed from media day,” CBS Sports Network NFL analyst Evan Washburn said on After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “Media day is so powerful and so crazy that even DeflateGate and everything that surrounded the team really wasn’t a big topic. It was everything you’ve come to expect from this event: crazy questions, costumes, so many media. It really surprised me more so during the New England Patriots’ hour session that deflated footballs and all that surrounded this team for the last week really wasn’t at all a topic. Obviously there were some questions, but it was again just the constant barrage of randomness that we come to expect from media day. To me, that stood out more than Marshawn Lynch’s five-minute session at the podium.”
The Patriots, when asked about DeflateGate, remained consistent in their response: We already covered that, and we’re moving on to Seattle.
“And obviously they now have the backing of Ted Wells, who’s investigating it for the NFL, saying they don’t want anyone talking about it,” Washburn said. “And obviously their owner, Robert Kraft, (made) a passionate defense of them on their arrival Monday night. Their focus is really on Seattle, which is what you would expect as they head into Super Bowl week. But again, as I made my way around most of the podiums, there weren’t that many questions about DeflateGate.”
Washburn was asked who the star of media day was.
“That’s a tough call,” he said. “Because it really feels like – and this is my second media day of really diving in and being a part of it – everybody seems to embrace it, even Bill Belichick.”
Washburn’s favorite media day moment came when Jerod Mayo’s daughter, Chya, asked Belichick a series of non-serious questions, including what type of stuffed animals he likes.
Belichick’s response? Puppets. Why? Because you can put your fingers in them, control their movements and make them talk.
“She got him to smile and open up.” Washburn said. “To me, if you can get Bill Belichick to open up and enjoy the day – (that’s impressive). He seemed pretty loose. Tom Brady was loose. Obviously Rob Gronkowksi was probably the star from the Patriots. He just enjoys a party atmosphere, and that’s really what (media day is) like.”
Washburn said that Richard Sherman was his typical passionate and eloquent self, while Michael Bennett was fun to be around as well.
“Again, if you can just sort of remove yourself from thinking that it’s a real journalistic effort as you head to media day, you can have some fun with it,” Washburn said. “Because it’s something unique in sports.”