NEWARK — Reclusive Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch treated Super Bowl media day like he does opposing defenders, creating brief contact before eluding his pursuers. Lynch shifted into “Least Mode” Tuesday as he ducked out of his mandatory interview session with reporters after 6 minutes and 21 seconds.
The seventh-year power back known for his tackle-breaking “Beast Mode” running style says he’ll feel more comfortable in the title game spotlight when his NFC champions face the Denver Broncos on Sunday than he was talking to a Prudential Center packed with reporters. Asked whether he enjoys media attention, Lynch didn’t hesitate.
“Nope, I’m just about action,” he said. “You say ‘hut,’ and there’s action. All the unnecessary talk, it don’t do nothing for me.
"I appreciate that people want to hear from me, but I just go to work and do my thing. You feel me?"
Question is, will the league fine Lynch? The running back was docked $50,000 by the NFL after he failed to speak to the media during the regular season. That fine was held in abeyance pending Lynch living up to his postseason obligations, which he had done during the playoffs.
But since every other Seattle and Denver Broncos player, coach and executive stayed for their entire hour-long media day block, did Lynch, who spent much of the Seahawks' session watching from a tunnel without speaking, actually fulfill his league-mandated requirement?
"Players are required to participate and he participated," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said in an e-mail to USA TODAY Sports. "We will continue to monitor the situation."
That could be an indication that Lynch will be required to stick around for the full Q&A periods the league has scheduled for both teams Wednesday and Thursday or risk a fine.
Lynch, who did a brief interview with NFL Network analyst Deion Sanders, is apparently a different guy when reporters are not around.
"He's talking — all the time," Seattle running backs coach Sherman Smith told USA TODAY Sports. "Marshawn doesn't dislike the media. He just doesn't like doing this stuff. So it's nothing personal with media — he just doesn't enjoy it.
"I've talked to him about it a couple of times. He just said, 'Sherm, I just don't enjoy it,' particularly if he feels he's being forced to do it."
Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll made light of Lynch's media phobia.
"I thought he did six great minutes from what I heard," Carroll said. "Some comedians make a career on that."
Later, Carroll was more expansive.
"He's got strong feelings about it," Carroll said. "We try to help him as much as we can, so that it fits together. ... He's quiet and to himself in public settings, and I think he feels way more comfortable not being involved very much.
"He's much more outgoing and gregarious when he's with the team."
Lynch was asked if he understands that media exposure helps him connect with fans.
"I understand that," he replied. "My fans love me regardless. They love the Seahawks. ... They aren't worried about what I've got to say. They just want to make sure I show up to perform."
Later, he added: "I won't be satisfied with this until it's all over. When we win, that's when I'll be satisfied. Until then, I've got work. But I appreciate all this. Y'all have a good day."
All his coaches and teammates seem concerned with is that Lynch's game speaks loudly Sunday night.