Have you heard of Marshawn Lynch?
Marshawn Lynch is a very good football player who doesn't care much for the media. Many in the media, in turn, do not care much for Lynch. His team, the Seattle Seahawks, are playing in the Super Bowl on Sunday, and thus has been the subject of a Justin Bieber-esque amount of media attention in a week's span. Lynch, in order to not get fined, has fulfilled the minimum time required by the NFL in interviews this week. The media is mad.
Who's to blame here? HuffPost Live tried to tackle the subject Friday, with Grantland's Bryan Curtis, the St. Paul Pioneer Press' Brian Murphy and a pair of writers — Gregg Doyel and Stephen Holder — from the Indianapolis Star.
"There are two camps of writers here," Doyel told host Marc Lamont Hill. "Two camps of media people that are down on Marshawn. One is [Holder's] camp, who is very sincere, just really cares about the journalism. Really cares about it and is curious. And that's a great camp to be in. The other camp sucks. That's the bigger camp. That's the camp that's very paternalistic about athletes. That's the camp that says, 'They're not doing what we told them to do. How dare you say no to me?'"
Ever since firing off this scathing tweet, Murphy has been labeled as part of the latter group Doyel described. He is not alone in his opinions, though, far from it.
The truth probably lies somewhere in the middle. Lynch shouldn't just have to do what he is told and spew boring quote after boring quote just to fill a writer's notebook. And, arguably, his show is more entertaining than anything else that has been said this week. But the fact remains that journalists have a job to do, and obstructing them from doing that job — to unearth stories about these players in the spotlight, which typically only helps promote the game — isn't the best strategy for Lynch to employ.
"This week, specifically, the media has embarrassed itself," Doyel continued. "If there was ever a week for an athlete to blow off the media, it's this week, because we're a bunch of jackasses here. I would've blown us off, too."
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