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It was reported earlier this month that the Seahawks might want to separate from Lynch due to money, health and team chemistry issues, but head coach Pete Carroll negated that report and suggested the Seahawks wanted Lynch to stay.
But now it looks like Lynch would rather leave when he feels like it, not when the Seahawks decide, per Rapoport:
"According to sources with direct knowledge of Lynch’s thinking, the 28-year-old is weighing the possibility of retiring after this year, saying goodbye to football on his owns terms."
Last year, Lynch reportedly considered retiring if the Seahawks won the Super Bowl, apparently discussing the decision with more than one teammate.
Seattle, of course, won the Super Bowl and Lynch decided to stay after re-negotiating his contract at the start of this season.
But he might not get a reasonable offer from Seattle at the end of the year, as the Seahawks plan on giving Russell Wilson a contract in the range of $100 million, which may not leave a lot of money for other players like Lynch.
The aging Lynch has also suffered from back injuries for the past four seasons and they have been bothering him greatly this year.
According to Rapoport, Lynch’s injury is in his spine as the cartilage is decompressed. This could be a big reason he is considering retirement:
"He’s missed just one game in the last four years, but he has battled back pain throughout. Thanks to countless hits over the course of his career, the cartilage in his spinal cord is compressed, which brings him discomfort. That’s just one factor as he ponders his future."
Rapoport also reported that Lynch might stay in the NFL if Tom Cable gets a head coaching job and that Lynch would consider following him to that team before retiring.
Lynch has rushed for 8,345 yards and 67 touchdowns in his eight-year career.