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The Early Lead
Posted at 04:13 PM ET, 12/13/2011

Marshawn Lynch has Seahawks running in “Beast Mode”


Marshawn Lynch is officially in “Beast Mode.” (Elaine Thompson - AP)
You know the play. Sixty-seven yards. Nine broken tackles. One of the most impressive individual efforts you’ll ever see on the football field.

Marshawn Lynch’s jaw-dropping, earthquake-inducing touchdown run against the Saints in last year’s playoffs was more than enough to validate the Seattle Seahawks sneaking into the field with a 7-9 record.

It was a run for the ages, but one that was easy to forget through the first six games of the 2011 season when Lynch was averaging all of 43.8 yards per game and the Seahawks were a dismal 2-4.

But over his last six games, Lynch has been in full effect — to the tune of 118 yards per game and seven touchdowns. And after Monday’s 30-13 rout of St. Louis, the Seahawks are 6-7, and believe it or not, still in the playoff hunt.

“Every carry he gets, it’s like his last carry,” Seahawks quarterback Tarvaris Jackson said earlier this month. “He fights for every yard and it shows. That’s the type of guy you want behind you.”

Lynch is all the rage in Seattle, where fans showered him with Skittles after he set a new franchise record by getting into the end zone for the ninth consecutive game.

Why, you ask? Well, on Dec. 1, NFL Network cameras showed Lynch gobbling up a handful of Skittles on the sideline during Seattle’s romp over Philadelphia. Duce Staley had his pickle juice, and now Lynch has his own form of fuel.

And it’s working. Lynch had another stunning run on Monday during which he spun, bounced and strong-armed his way through a series of tacklers to pick up a first down (video here).

The Seahawks would likely need to win out and hope that the Lions (8-5), Giants or Cowboys (both 7-6), Bears (7-6) and Falcons (8-5) — who own a head-to-head tiebreaker — falter.

The odds are stacked against them for sure, but when Marshawn Lynch is in “Beast Mode”, you never know.

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By  |  04:13 PM ET, 12/13/2011

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