Seahawks mum on whether they’ll collect Marshawn’s bonus money


Peyton Manning chose not to announce his retirement after last night’s game. Marshawn Lynch chose to announce his retirement during it.

Vague at first, it quickly became clear that Lynch is indeed done, with tweets from Richard Sherman, Russell Wilson, and (most convincingly) owner Paul Allen confirming it.

The one thing the Seahawks haven’t and likely won’t confirm is whether Lynch will be permitted to keep the $5 million in signing bonus money he hasn’t earned yet. The safe guess is that it was understood a year ago that the Seahawks wouldn’t seek reimbursement if he retired after 2015. But the Seahawks would be wise to not publish that, because then other players who retire with unearned signing bonus money may expect the same courtesy.

It’s also unknown whether the Seahawks conditioned Marshawn’s retention of the money on his commitment to remaining retired. If he returns later in the year and plays for another team, the Seahawks would be entitled to be more than a little miffed.

30 responses to “Seahawks mum on whether they’ll collect Marshawn’s bonus money

  1. I don’t think that Marshawn has the ability to grasp the concept that he will have to pay that portion of his bonus money back.

  2. If he’s done, he’ll be done.
    Seahawks will let him keep the bonus.

    Lynch, thanks for everything you did for the franchise, and even more importantly thanks for what you’re doing for another generation of kids helping them get chances in life they might not otherwise get with your foundation.

  3. Maybe one of the networks will hire him. He could just sit there on the set scowling at the camera answering “I don’t know” every time they ask him a question.

  4. He would only have to give back 2.5mil of the bonus, but the Seahawks would not see that towards their cap until the 2017 season. Thus, no reason to collect it as Lynch helped turn the team from “soft” during the Holgrem era, to a tougher team. His play paved the wait to their first SB win. That’s worth 2.5mil. Also Seattle has the rights to Lynch if they do not cut him.

  5. His agent should have confirmed by now with the Seahawks that they won’t go after his bonus, and told the team if they won’t agree to let him keep the bonus then Marshawn won’t file retirement papers and he’ll stay on the team’s cap until they release him.

  6. If I were the seahawks, I’d let him keep it so long as he does not come back to play for another team.

  7. He will keep the money. That is how the Seahawks roll. Classy organization. Like how they paid that kid after drafting him even though he could never play football with that condition recently.

    If they don’t pay him Marshawn did or said something to the wrong person. Don’t think that happened as we all saw him flip off Darrell beveled on national TV right before a play. Nobody batted an eye then either. The Hawks have ALWAYS let Marshawn be marshawn. It is why he was successful.

  8. How are they being mum about this? His announcement came last night during the Super Bowl and the only comments made by anybody else have been some tweets confirming he’s retiring. This wasn’t at a press conference and nobody from Seattle has been directly asked about his bonus.

  9. Well, unless he’s a deadbeat, he’ll sign over that check back to the Seahawks when he makes it official. Otherwise he needs to get back to work.

  10. jpaq68 says:
    Feb 8, 2016 10:18 AM

    I don’t think that Marshawn has the ability to grasp the concept that he will have to pay that portion of his bonus money back.


    Considering that Yahoo Finance is reporting that Lynch hasn’t spent any of his NFL money I believe your assertion to be incorrect.

    Because someone doesn’t look or talk like you doesn’t mean they lack intelligence.

  11. If they let him keep the bonus money, then doesn’t the money count against the salary cap? How could they keep that a secret? Why would the Seahawks do something that hurts their team, self-reducing their cap space?

  12. Thanks for the memories and contribution to the Seahawks Mr. Lynch. Best of luck to you on your future endeavors.

    I do want to point out that if as reported, he retires, but then later in the season “un-retires” the Seahawks would have to absorb his current cap hit for 2016 and be able to remain under the cap space. That is the biggest problem with his retirement and Megatron’s for that matter….Getting money back is not really a problem for the owners of any NFL team. It is the planning for those big ticket players who retire and those teams not wanting to formally release them. Thus, that means they have to be able to absorb the cap hit if the player changes their minds or don’t actually submit the NFLPA retirement papers…… If that happens, then the team has to decide if they need to release/waive/cut the player or some other player to stay below the cap.

    I bet that the team will keep enough space on hand or have a plan to adjust, if it becomes necessary during this off season/pre season.

    In the meantime, happy for the Oakland area and Mr. Lynch. Good luck in the future.

  13. How about this as a means of ending this discussion on Marshawn’s signing bonus. Marshawn returns what money he is owned back to the Seahawks to lower the Cap on other players. In return for Marshawn not signing with another team, Paul Allen gives a good sum of money to Marshawns Charity. Sounds like a big plus all the way around.

  14. I read so many posts probably driven by racism that Lynch will be broke yada yada yada. Word is he hasn’t spent a dime of his career earnings (About 50 million).

    Any of you think Paul Allen is hurting for money? The only part that helps is the few million that can be put the cap. Why Seattle would share what they are going to do to the media right now is ridiculous.

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