OAKLAND -- Super Bowl champion running back Marshawn Lynch pleaded no contest Thursday to lesser charge in connection with his drunken driving arrest nearly two years ago.
The 27-year-old Seattle Seahawks player was charged with two misdemeanor counts of drunken driving following a July 2012 arrest on Interstate 880 in Oakland.
Under a plea deal Thursday, he pleaded no contest to a lesser charge of "wet and reckless" and was sentenced to 12 hours of DUI school, two years court probation and a $1,030 fine.
Lynch's attorney Ivan Golde said the Oakland native and former Cal football star took a plea deal to avoid the spectacle of a trial despite confidence that he would have prevailed in court. "There is no way a jury would have convicted him based on these facts," Golde said.
His trial was scheduled to begin Monday.
"After winning the Super Bowl, he's got his endorsements, he didn't want a public trial that would bring him into a negative light," Golde said. "This was a resolution that made sense for him, made sense for the Seattle Seahawks, made sense for the NFL."
Lynch blew a .08 percent blood alcohol level, the lowest level deemed illegal, and the breath test device used has a .03 percent margin of error. The arresting CHP officer gave inconsistent statements about how long he was following Lynch and the video/audio camera on his patrol car was not functioning that night, Golde said. Lynch performed well during the field sobriety tests, he added.
The CHP officer had cited swerving as the reason for the traffic stop.
This is not Lynch's first brush with the law.
His driver's license was revoked in 2008 after he pleaded guilty to "failing to exercise due care toward a pedestrian." Lynch said he was unaware that he had struck a woman outside a Buffalo, N.Y., bar at 3:30 a.m.
The NFL suspended Lynch in 2009 for three games following a misdemeanor gun charge in Los Angeles. It is not clear what, if any, discipline will be handed down to Lynch from the league.
League spokesman Greg Aiello told USA TODAY Sports in an email Thursday the league "would review the facts under our league policies."