What does future hold for Seahawks RB Marshawn Lynch?

Will the Seahawks move on from Marshawn Lynch after this season? AP Images/Elaine Thompson

Every weekday morning, we'll round up local and national Seattle Seahawks-related links.

Stephen Cohen of the Seattle Post Intelligencer looks at whether the Seahawks will move on from Marshawn Lynch after this season:

He's appeared on the team's injury report every week since Week 3 with a variety of injuries, including a hamstring problem that cost him two games in Weeks 4 and 5.

Then there are the nagging back problems that have taken him out for chunks of games over the last few seasons and reportedly caused him to seriously consider retiring after last season.

Lynch decided to come back, signing a two-year, $24 million extension that would keep him in Seattle through the 2017 season and pay him a guaranteed $12 million. But almost no one expected him to play out the length of that deal, particularly given his flirtations with retirement during the last year and a half.

Bob Condotta of The Seattle Times gives the Seahawks' defense a B- for its performance against the 49ers:

Still, the Seahawks coaching staff was exasperated enough to make a rare move to bench a starter during the game, taking out Cary Williams after he gave up a 25-yard pass to Anquan Boldin late in the third quarter and replacing him with DeShawn Shead as the other outside cornerback.

The team had issues again defending tight ends: The 49ers’ tight ends had six catches for 100 yards.

Jacson Bevens of Field Gulls offers his impressions of running back Thomas Rawls:

If this is Lynch's last season in Seattle, and each missed game makes that possibility more real, replacing him with Rawls saves the team [about] $11 million in cap space at the position (not counting mitigation dependent on how he leaves). He's the player we were all hoping Christine Michael would be but at an an even greater bargain. Furthermore, if Rawls is that guy, that's at least one draft pick saved next year, and who knows how high that pick on the "next" RB would be. Look, it's all conjecture at this point -- we don't know if Rawls is capable of handling an NFL-sized workload every week, for example -- but it would be a disservice to the performance we saw today if we didn't take a minute to appreciate what it might mean.

Don Banks of SI.com offers his thoughts on Rawls and Lynch:

After years of trying to identify him, it at last looks like the Seahawks have Marshawn Lynch’s eventual replacement on the roster in undrafted rookie running back Thomas Rawls. With Lynch out of the lineup and missing a third game this season, this time due to a lingering abdominal injury, Rawls gave Seattle quite the glimpse of the future, running 30 times for 209 yards in the Seahawks’ 29–13 win over visiting San Francisco. Rawls also chipped in with 46 yards on three receptions and totaled four gains of at least 20 yards, and now there’s no rush to get Lynch back in the lineup. Lynch will reportedly see a specialist in Philadelphia on Monday regarding his abdominal injury.

Score another one for the science of the NFL draft. Rawls wasn’t deemed to have enough potential to warrant even a seventh-round pick by any of the league’s 32 teams, and now he may be the horse Seattle rides to a playoff berth.