Seahawks terminate contracts of Kam Chancellor, Doug Baldwin
The Seahawks have terminated contracts of wide receiver Doug Baldwin and strong safety Kam Chancellor with failed physical designations, the team announced Thursday.
“The Seahawks have made the difficult decision to terminate/failed physical Doug Baldwin and Kam Chancellor,” Seahawks general manager John Schneider said in a statement. “These are two of the most iconic players in franchise history and both were instrumental in establishing our championship culture, great examples of competitiveness and leadership on the field and in the community. These legendary players will always be a part of our Seahawks family.”
While Chancellor’s official retirement was long expected as he has not played since 2017, Thursday’s move answers questions that stemmed from a more recent report about Baldwin’s potential retirement.
Baldwin, 30, originally signed on with the Seahawks in 2011 as an undrafted rookie free agent out of Stanford. Baldwin didn’t just work his way onto Seattle’s 53-man roster; he became the top target for then-Seahawks quarterback Tarvaris Jackson, finishing his rookie year with 788 yards and four touchdowns. He remained Russell Wilson’s top target in all but three seasons (2012, 2013, and 2018), and holds franchise records for most receiving touchdowns in a single season (14, set in 2015) and most catches in a single season (94, set in 2016). He ranks third in team history in all-time receiving yards (6,563) behind Brian Blades and Hall of Famer Steve Largent, and is second only to Largent in career touchdowns (49).
However, after playing through a 2018 season that was marred by injury, Baldwin underwent three surgeries this offseason to repair damage to his shoulder, knee, and repair a sports hernia. On April 26, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Baldwin was facing retirement “due to the cumulative effect of multiple injuries.”
Chancellor, 31, informally announced the end of his playing career in July 2018 after suffering a neck injury, but to avoid forfeiting a part of his guaranteed salary, he was retained on Seattle’s roster. Chancellor remained with the team throughout the season, where he made appearances at training camp and games.
Chancellor, a fifth-round pick by the Seahawks in 2010, was an original member of the Seahawks’ Legion of Boom secondary. Over eight seasons, he recorded 641 tackles (434 solo tackles), 44 passes defended, 12 interceptions, nine forced fumbles, and two sacks, and was a four-time Pro Bowler. Along with former Seahawk Earl Thomas, Chancellor formed the safety tandem of a defense that led the league in fewest points allowed for four consecutive seasons.