By Dayna O’Gorman // @DaynaOG
It was an announcement many expected, but no one was looking forward to. Seattle Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor, a founding member of the famed Legion of Boom, has decided to step away from football.
It was November 10, 2017. It will become a day that Seahawks fans won’t ever forget simply because, now, it marks the end of an era. It was a typical hard knock game between division rivals. Seven players left the game between Seattle and Arizona due to injury. Two of those players were cornerback Richard Sherman and Chancellor. Neither will ever see a Seahawk uniform again.
Chancellor sustained a neck injury, a “stinger”, toward the end of that game. It’s the same injury that ended defensive end Cliff Avril’s career the same year. Head coach Pete Carroll said multiple times that it would be very hard to come back from this type of injury, but fans held out hope.
In what appeared to be a very heart felt, and heart wrenching, announcement on Twitter, Chancellor announced he would be moving on from football. That his neck hadn’t healed, and he was moving on to the next chapter.
Gods Grace ?????? pic.twitter.com/60J2DugpD1
— Kameron Chancellor (@KamChancellor) July 1, 2018
Chancellor had a very impressive career with Seattle, playing in 109 games, with 434 tackles and 307 assists. But more than that, it was his imposing presence on the field that was most impressive. Players were scared of him. He was a large, hulking figure that loomed in the secondary, just waiting to destroy. He was the BOOM in the Legion of Boom.
— Samuel Gold (@SamuelRGold) July 1, 2018
As has been widely reported, Chancellor is walking away from the game, but not officially retiring. He won’t be medically cleared to play, but he has an injury clause in his contract that allows him to be paid $5.2 million in 2019. His 2018 salary of $6.8 million became guaranteed last February. They also gain cap space in 2019 and 2020, which could be helpful as they have many players who are due new contracts. (Pay Earl Thomas!!)
Listen, as a fan, this just sucks to see our once dominant defense have to start over again. Yet, if I’m being my most honest self, I’m very relieved. The thought of watching Chancellor play again, and cringing every time he tackled someone, panicking just a little when it took him a minute to get up from a hit, well…it makes me ill. I will miss watching him play. I will miss the Legion of Boom. However, none of that is worth someone’s quality of life.
Kam said it himself in his announcement. “Pray for your boy. I have no clue how these head injuries will go after the game.” A sobering statement that every football player has to think about at some point. I’m glad he made the valiant, brave choice to leave the game he loves.
We will miss you Kam. Miss your calm, kind nature off the field, and your fierce competitiveness on the field. You are forever a Seahawk.
Follow Dayna on Twitter // @DaynaOG