Seattle, Wa – The Seattle Seahawks on Thursday terminated the contracts of two players who were long considered to be the “heart and soul” of their respective units during the franchise’s best-ever period of success. The club announced that they were terminating Doug Baldwin and Kam Chancellor’s pacts with the team, resulting from failed physical designations. The loss will certainly be felt, as the thirty year-old Baldwin had consistently proven to be quarterback Russell Wilson’s most trusted target in the team’s receiver corps, and had already established himself as one of the truly great wideouts in club history, trailing only Hall of Famer Steve Largent for the team’s record for most career touchdown receptions.
The two-time Pro Bowler leaves the club having amassed the third-most receptions and receiving yards in team history; feats that are all the more impressive considering the fact that the native of Gulf Breeze, Florida was signed as an undrafted free agent out of Stanford, and was not considered to be a blue chip prospect at the time.
The move away from Chancellor, despite being anything but shocking, will still have major ramifications on the defensive side of the ball that will likely be felt in Seattle for years. A run-stuffing starting strong safety with range affectionately and appropriately dubbed “Bam Bam Kam” by his mates, the Virginia Tech product was said instrumental to the unit’s sustained success as he truly embraced his role as the “tone setter” of coach Pete Carroll’s vaunted “Legion of Boom” secondary. The cerebral and level-headed Chancellor was a co-pilot of sorts on the backend with Earl Thomas III, but had been languishing on the injured reserve list for the better part of a year with a serious neck injury. Despite this fact, some in the organization were still said to have held out hope that the 2010 fifth round Draft pick would undergo a miraculous recovery and be able to return to action, up until the very last minute.
However, with Thursday’s announcement the only National Football League team playing in the Pacific Northwest has now said sayonara and bon voyage to the last remaining member of the notorious Legion of Boom, joining original card-carrying members Thomas, Richard Sherman, and lesser-known replacement right cornerbacks Brandon Browner and Byron Maxwell, officially closing a glorious, yet still fully unfulfilled period in the team’s history.
That the entire team took their cue from Chancellor and Baldwin- albeit with help from Thomas, Sherman, and of course Mr. Beast Mode himself, Marshawn Lynch- in cultivating the team’s overall personality and mentality of basically “you have to prove to me that you are better than me” was undeniable. Another undeniable fact was that that iteration of the ballclub, including all of the players, and the city’s long-suffering football fans, deserved much better. For example, not having a second consecutive Super Bowl Championship run sabotaged from within for fears of what a certain hard-charging and media-averse yet uniquely talented unicorn of a 215-lb. ballcarrier might have done had he been given the opportunity to take another crack at scoring from inside the 2-yard line. In the meantime, Seahawks supporters can only wonder and fantasize about what might have been, and what this truly special group could have accomplished together, had things worked out differently.
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