The Seahawks signed Chancellor to a reported four-year, $28 million contract extension.
Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor had to keep a secret.
Chancellor returned to Virginia Tech, his alma mater, this weekend with former Hokies Tyrod Taylor, David Wilson and Brandon Flowers to watch the spring game and participate in a panel for defensive coordinator Bud Foster’s foundation.
All the while Chancellor knew the Seahawks had signed him to a four-year contract extension through 2017, but he couldn’t say anything. There was only one thing the 25-year-old Chancellor could do.
“The best part was to be able to take care of my guys there, go take them out for drinks, go eat and be able to pick up the tab like it’s nothing,” Chancellor said. “Looking forward to doing it again.”
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The Seahawks on Monday announced Chancellor’s new deal, widely reportedly to be worth $28 million, including $17 million guaranteed. Chancellor, a fifth-round pick in 2010, had one year left on his rookie contract, but general manager John Schneider said extending Chancellor’s contract was the team’s top priority in what has been a busy offseason.
“Anything that happened other than being able to sign Kam was a bonus,” Schneider said. “It was our absolute No. 1 priority. We talked about it for a long time.
“This whole offseason, from the get-go, has been about Kam. We would have never gotten into any other deals if we felt it was going to put his situation in jeopardy.”
Chancellor played behind veteran safety Lawyer Milloy as a rookie and spent most of his time on special teams. But he made the Pro Bowl as an alternate the next year, and has developed into one of the league’s biggest hitters at strong safety.
In fact, Chancellor, who has been fined by the league in the past for some of his hits, joked, “I guess I can put a little pot to the side now.”
“He is a leader,” coach Pete Carroll said. “He’s a great football player. He’s a physical guy that plays right in the vein of the way we want to play. He stands for toughness and being physical, and we love every bit about that.”
There was speculation this offseason about the Seahawks’ chances of keeping core pieces like Chancellor once their rookie contracts neared an end. That was particularly true with Seattle’s young secondary, which is one of the best in the league. As Virginia Tech’s Foster said recently: “They got a bargain with those young guys. But it ain’t going to be a bargain much longer.”
Cornerback Richard Sherman and safety Earl Thomas are scheduled to become free agents in 2015. Schneider wouldn’t elaborate on whom the team is negotiating extensions with, but he did make it clear that locking up Chancellor was crucial.
“They told me at the end of last season that they were going to take care of me because they knew I was a core guy that worked hard all the time and led by example,” Chancellor said. “I just feel blessed right now. I feel like I’m in a good situation and good spot. I’m glad I can put this behind me and concentrate on football and leading this program to a championship. That’s all we’re about right now.”
But for a few nights with some old friends in Blacksburg, Va., Chancellor got to quietly celebrate his reward.
“He was just (the) same old Kam when he was here this weekend,” Foster said. “He wasn’t any different. It would have been the ideal time for him to be boasting and feeling good about himself. Not once did he come across that way. That’s just Kam.”
Jayson Jenks: 206-464-8277 or firstname.lastname@example.org