Just after the 2019 NFL draft, Marshawn Lynch announced his retirement (for the second time) from the NFL, shocking the football community to its core. He’ll finish his career with over 10,000 rushing yards and 94 total touchdowns, including one as a passer.
While there’s plenty of talk about whether he’s going to be a surefire Hall of Famer, we wanted to explore the aspects of Lynch that no one really knows. From his family life to his spending habits to the reason he seemingly hates the media as much as he does — let’s go Beast Mode and dive in.
He Was A Beast In High School
It kind of goes without saying that Marshawn Lynch was destroying defenses in high school. He played a ton of sports in his youth and excelled at all of them.
He played on the Oakland Tech basketball team that ended up making it to the state semifinals. But, his main focus was always football. He played a bunch of positions while in high school, including safety, linebacker, and quarterback. His QB experience paid off when he threw a touchdown pass in an NFL game with the Buffalo Bills.
Marshawn’s Favorite Run May Surprise You
Marshawn Lynch is one of the most consistent playmakers in the NFL. His highlight reel rivals some of the best to ever play the game.
His second gear is something that most players can only dream about reaching. He’s had a few memorable runs in the NFL named “Beastquake” and “Beastquake 2.0,” but those aren’t his favorite runs of all time. He said his favorite run ever was in high school when he made a few defenders look silly before sprinting for a 46-yard score.
His Mom’s Love Is All He Needs
The relationship Marshawn has with his mother is enough to make anyone smile. All he wanted to do was make his mom proud of what he was doing, and he certainly succeeded. Marshawn’s mother, Delisa, wanted nothing more in life than to see her son have a more stable life than she did in Oakland.
Marshawn promised that he’d buy his mom a house when he was just twelve years old and said that he was going to make it to the NFL someday.
He Picked UC Berkely Because It Was Close To His Mom
Marshawn’s mother said that her son had a can-do attitude all the way through his youth. They were extremely close throughout all the difficult times that they faced as a family. When Marshawn had to go to Buffalo to play football, it was the farthest they’d ever been from each other.
She said that it was extremely difficult for both of them to cope with the distance. He chose to go to UC Berkeley because it was close to home.
He Was Literally Born For Football
According to a story from Marshawn’s mother, he was always destined to be a beast. When he was born, there were two placentas, indicating that he may have a twin who never developed.
Delisa said that when the midwife noticed this, she and the doctor said that Marshawn was probably going to be abnormally strong as he was living off both of them. Talk about being born to be an insanely good running back.
He Tore Up The NCAA
During his three years in college, no one stood a chance when Marshawn Lynch found his stride. While playing for the Cal Golden Bears during his sophomore and junior years, he gained 1,246 and 1,356 yards on the ground respectively, and a total of 21 rushing touchdowns.
He’s left his legacy at UC Berkeley by being the second all-time leader in rushing yards. He also holds the school record for most 100-plus yard games, with seventeen.
He Has Quite The Diverse Car Collection
During his first retirement year away from football, Marshawn did some traveling, notably making his way to Scotland to get people talking about the Super Bowl. He did a little bit of charity work and reviewed some cars.
No matter where he went, humor ensued. He has a very respectable collection of cars himself. He has a white Lamborghini Aventador and a Jaguar F-Type, just to name a few. He also humbly owns a Toyota Prius and has even bragged about still owning his 1986 Honda Civic.
His Short Time In Buffalo Was Eventful
Marshawn was the twelfth overall pick in 2007 by the Buffalo Bills. A lot of people don’t know that he’s a very smart guy, but when it came to the city of Buffalo, he had no idea where it was. He admits that when he was drafted he thought Buffalo was in New York City.
He later learned that it wasn’t all that close to New York City. He had an eventful first few months and many run-ins with the police. At one point, he contacted the police chief in Buffalo to inquire on why he was always getting pulled over.
His Stats Are Ridiculous
It’s true that stats never tell the true story about who an athlete really is, but it’s silly to ignore the numbers. He has over 11,000 career yards from scrimmage, which puts him well into the top 70 all-time.
His total career rushing yards put him just over the 10,000-yard mark, and he had six 1,000-plus rushing yard seasons with at least 12 touchdowns. That’s really only scratching the surface when talking about how he impacted the game.
Marshawn And Skittles Are A Match In Heaven
One of the weirdest things about Lynch is that he munches Skittles all the time on the field. Ever since his high school days, Skittles have been a regular part of his routine.
Once again, all of the stories point back to his mother who was trying to sooth her son’s stomach. At the time, Marshawn was prone to get an upset stomach before games. Skittles was the only thing that ended up sticking and she even referred to them as “power pellets.”
Beast Mode Activated
There have been very few nicknames in today’s NFL that have been as relevant and spot-on as Beast Mode. It’s catchy and fun to say, which blends perfectly with Lynch’s punishing, aggressive, and downright beastly rushing style.
When he was asked about where the name came from, he said coaches first started saying that he ran like some kind of beast when he was in high school. When he got to college and started demolishing people the nickname came back.
Beast Mode Has Moved From A Nickname To A Philosophy
A lot of people don’t know, but before he made Beast Mode a household name, he also went by “Money” throughout his college career and during his first few years in the NFL.
Fans caught on to the Beast Mode nickname and really made it take off. He has said that to him, “Beast Mode” is more than just a nickname. It’s moved from just being a nickname to becoming a personal philosophy.
He’s Incredibly Charitable
Even though he has a punishing running style and intensity on the field, Marshawn is actually very charitable. The best guess is that he gets all his anger out on the field and then becomes super mellow in his downtime.
The Fam 1st Family Foundation is close to Marshawn’s heart. The group provides educational resources and overall personal development initiatives for underprivileged children in the Bay Area. Lynch is one of the founders of the organization.
Football Runs In His Family Genes
Marshawn comes from a very athletic family. It goes without saying that some families just have a more athletic gene in them, and Marshawn’s family was blessed in this category. It’s incredibly difficult to make it as a professional athlete, but the Lynch family have a few members who made it to the pros.
Marshawn’s cousin Robert Jordan played professional football in Canada, and another one of his cousins, Joshua Johnson, had a solid career as a backup quarterback in a few franchises.
The Lynch Family Had Tasted NFL Success Before
The legendary draft bust Jamarcus Russell is also related to Marshawn Lynch. He became the laughing stock of the NFL community after being taken first overall in 2007, only to disappoint the Raiders for three years afterward.
But, if you look back a generation, Lynch’s uncle played cornerback for three teams over 11 years in the 1980s and ’90s. Marshawn’s mother was also a very good athlete in her youth, setting track and field records when she was in high school.
His Rocky Past With The Media
The relationship between Marshawn Lynch and the media is a bit rocky, to say the least. He gained some fame a few years ago for refusing to talk to the media after games. He was fined for the display, but his refusal to talk actually made him a household name.
His mother says that he was always somewhat of a quiet person and often did not like talking to people who he didn’t trust.
He’s Incredibly Business Savvy
Interestingly enough, he has a lot of good people who surround him, which results in him having a decent head on his shoulders. He’s known to take very good care of his money, despite spending a lot of it.
He gets a lot of money off of his endorsements and business dealings. He has a clothing company which is named after none other than “Beast Mode.” He has two retail locations in Oakland and Seattle and a booming online store.
He Wants His Play To Do The Talking
His grandfather was a key influence in his life and told him that there’s no point in talking too much and that he should let his point of view be expressed on the field.
Marshawn mentioned this life lesson in a few interviews over the years. Lynch says that he never wanted to make his success on the field strictly about him, especially considering that a QB, offensive line, and receivers also play a huge part in what happens as well.
Marshawn’s Father Has Been Absent For Most Of His Life
We’ve mentioned a lot about his mother in this article, but not much is said about his father. His dad has been absent from most of his life, but Marshawn was fortunate to have that void filled by cousins, uncles, and grandfathers.
Lynch’s dad did show up to a few high school games, he’s been mostly removed from every aspect of Marshawn’s life. He has spent some time in prison over the years, which was the main reason for his absence.
But He Did Have A Solid Foundation In His Life
His dad, named Maurice Sapp, did have a lasting impact on Marshawn by legally giving him the Sapp-Lynch last name. Marshawn eventually dropped the “Sapp” altogether as soon as he got into high school.
As we mentioned earlier, his primary male familial influence in his youth was his grandfather LeRon, but he also looked up to several of his coaches over the years. He credits a lot of his success to all the people who stepped in to help build the foundation around him.