TORONTO – Marshawn Lynch stayed true to form, both during and after the game Sunday.
The Seattle Seahawks’ star running back rushed for another 113 yards on just 10 carries in a 50-17 demolition of the Buffalo Bills in the Rogers Centre.
As easily as he brushed off tacklers, he gave reporters looking to speak with him after the game the slip, just as he has all week. Dressed in a black hoodie with a pair of Beats headphones over his ears, Lynch offered a simple “no, I’m good” when asked to talk about running wild all over his former team.
No problem. His teammates were happy to do it for him.
“Marshawn runs so hard,” Seahawks center Max Unger said. “He’s got to be one of the hardest-working guys in the NFL when he has the ball in his hands. He makes us want to do our jobs that much more.
“Extra incentive for him, obviously, coming against the team he was drafted up here by. He wanted it. We all knew where we were going and what the deal is. It’s special for any guy who gets to play the team that he previously played for. It meant a lot.”
Lynch’s big gain came on a 54-yard run in the second quarter, when a Grand Canyon-sized crevice opened in the middle of the Bills’ defense. Lynch took the ball down to the Buffalo 4-yard line, and on the next play rookie quarterback Russell Wilson threw a touchdown pass to tight end Zach Miller, giving the Seahawks a 24-7 lead and officially signaling the rout as being on.
Led by Lynch and the read option offense run by Wilson, the Seahawks rushed for 270 yards.
“We knew we had our work cut out for us,” said Bills safety George Wilson. “We had a productive week of practice, but it all comes down to execution on game day. They executed better than we did.”
Wilson is one of just three defensive starters for the Bills to have played with Lynch, who spent the first three full seasons of his NFL career with the team that drafted him 12th overall in 2007. Lynch, 26, has thrived since heading west four games into the 2010 season, rushing for 1,204 yards last year. He’s got 1,379 through 14 games this year, trailing only Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson in the race to be the NFL’s leading rusher.
Lynch added a 13-yard touchdown run in the third quarter, the 28th of his Seahawks career.
The Bills as a team have rushed for 27 since Lynch was traded. He was expendable in Buffalo in part because of the presence of C.J. Spiller, whom the team drafted in the first round in 2010. Spiller finished with 103 yards on 17 carries. The two met on the Seattle sideline in the fourth quarter after a Spiller run.
“He just bumped into me, we didn’t exchange no words. That’s just Marshawn being Marshawn,” Spiller said. “I thanked him [after the game] for everything that he taught me in the time he was here. I told him he’s a great player. Everybody knows that.”
Lynch’s average per rush of 11.3 yards narrowly missed the career high he set last week, when he gained 11.6 yards per carry. That came in a 58-0 rout of Arizona in which Lynch rushed just 11 times for 128 yards and two touchdowns. That makes for a two-game total of 241 yards and four touchdowns on just 21 carries. He’s topped 100 yards eight times this season.
Lynch came into the game probable because of back and foot injuries, so the Seahawks were more than happy to limit his carries.
“He was just rock solid. I didn’t have to say anything to him,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. “I asked him if he was OK going back, and he said he was fine. He played great.”