OAKLAND -- Marshawn Lynch wasn’t happy with the Raiders' offense early in Sunday's game against the Browns. The veteran running back let his offensive linemen know about it.
Lynch doesn’t speak up much on the sideline, but he felt compelled to rally the troops with some fire and brimstone.
“Marshawn only talks when things go really bad,” said edge rusher Bruce Irvin, who worked with Lynch in Seattle. “I’ve seen him rally the guys together a couple times in Seattle but, when the 'Beast' needs to say something, he’s going to say it. It obviously worked, because we got out of here with a win.”
Lynch’s language wasn’t family friendly, but the message came across. He wanted better, and he got it.
“We were trying to focus in,” center Rodney Hudson said. “Things weren’t going the way we wanted them to, and it was the little things. He rallied us, and [we] were able to get a touchdown and build off of that.”
Lynch had an excellent day. He ran 20 times for 130 yards against the Browns, an effort vital to the 45-42 overtime victory at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum. He also had three catches for 27 yards.
The Oakland native proved difficult to bring down, with significant yards gained after contact. He even fooled officials once. They thought he was stopped cold and blew the whistle too soon, only to see him break free for what would’ve been a huge gain.
They waited from then on, as Lynch scrapped and clawed through one big gain after another.
“He runs so hard,” Hudson said. “We just try to get him to the second level and finish with him. He never goes down, so as blockers you have to continue to push and battle.”
Lynch's running style can be inspiring in a game like this, showing a never-say-die attitude that can be contagious.
“He ran his butt off today,” tight end Jared Cook said. “And we needed it, breaking two and three tackles to keep the chains moving.”
Lynch rarely speaks publicly -- he didn’t after this huge win -- but he did so after last week’s loss in Miami. He was clear in his evaluation of the Raiders, saying they were ever-so-close to breaking through to win.
He wasn’t talking to fans there, he was talking to his teammates. Lynch spoke to them directly on the sideline, and then ran with passion down the stretch.
“We had some big runs when we needed them,” coach Jon Gruden said. “Lynch is unbelievable. What a great competitor.”