Before he raised the 12th man flag, Kam Chancellor offered his most detailed description yet of the medical conditions that appear likely to end his NFL career.
Kam Chancellor remains on the Seahawks’ roster, officially on the team’s reserve/physically unable to perform list.
But added evidence that his playing days are over came when he was asked to raise the 12th man flag for Sunday’s regular season opener against the Dallas Cowboys.
In a pre-game interview on the team’s flagship radio network at Touchdown City, Chancellor said raising the flag is a further realization that he has to get used to a new reality.
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“It feels kind of strange to just watch the guys out there battle and fight,” Chancellor said. “That’s something I was raised in for 22 years. … it’s an out-of-body experience for me that I’ve got to get used to.”
Chancellor remains on the team’s roster due to a contract that pays him a $6.8 million injury guarantee this year and $5.2 million next year — he would lose that money if he officially retired and it remains better for the team’s salary cap situation that he remain on the roster for now.
But while Chancellor recently published an Instagram post that some took as him hinting at a comeback, Chancellor said there is nothing new in his health while giving the most detailed description yet of what his health situation is.
Chancellor laughed when told the Instagram post seemed cryptic saying, “All of them are cryptic to everybody.”
Chancellor said he has not talked to his doctors recently, saying of the apparent optimism in his post — he wrote “Fight till you cant fight anymore!!!!’’ with the hashtag #StayTuned — that, “I believe in miracles, man, so anything can happen. I always say that.”
But Chancellor’s description of his injuries also shows a comeback is unlikely, if not improbable. Chancellor tweeted in July that he had been told he could no longer play again.
Chancellor said he has been diagnosed with spinal stenosis, which he described as a buildup of calcification behind his C-2 and C-3 vertebrae, and also said he also has bone spurs behind his C-2, C-3, C-4 and C-5 vertebrae.
“It’s just all of the wear and tear and just buildup of ickiness in my neck right now,’’ said Chancellor, who has not talked to the media at-large since his last game with the Seahawks on Nov. 9 at Arizona when he was taken out of the game at the two-minute warning. “If I bump my head I just lose all my feeling.’’
Chancellor, who turned 30 last April, has been visible at a few practices and is remaining in the area for now.
Of raising the flag, Chancellor said he planned to approach it the same way he did playing.
“I’m just going to flow with the spirit,’’ he said. “I don’t know, that’s usually how the game goes. Just flow with the spirit and let it rip.’’