The Seattle Seahawks season has now been over for more than a month following their loss to the Dallas Cowboys in the Wild Card game at AT&T Stadium, but even with free agency still more than a month away there are important offseason happenings going on. Specifically, today is a big day for Kam Chancellor and the salary cap situation for the Hawks for 2019, as former agent Joel Corry pointed out on Twitter.
$5.2M of Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor’s $10M 2019 base salary, which was guaranteed for injury at signing, becomes fully guaranteed today.— Joel Corry (@corryjoel) February 8, 2019
So, for everyone who has been claiming that the Hawks can save $8M on the 2019 salary cap by cutting Chancellor since that’s what it says on OverTheCap.com, today is the day that changes. Now, it will take OTC some time to update their numbers, but in the coming weeks they will most certainly update Chancellor’s contract to reflect the fact that this portion of his base salary is now fully guaranteed.
Now, to head off the question that I am sure some will ask - if the money becomes fully guaranteed today, then why did the team not cut him before today? The answer to that rests in the simple fact that it’s irrelevant. The money that becomes fully guaranteed today - the $5.2M - is also guaranteed for injury, which means that in order to be able to cut Chancellor and recover that money, then he has to be able to pass a physical. If he cannot pass a physical, then since the money is guaranteed for injury releasing him would save absolutely nothing against the salary cap.
And if Kam can pass a physical, then there’s no need to cut him because it means he’s healthy enough to play in 2019. There’s been absolutely no indication that he could pass a physical, and so there’s no reason to have any belief that we will be lucky enough to see him on the field for 2019.
That said, my guess is that what we’re likely to see with Chancellor this season is a release sometime around the beginning of training camp. If he has not recovered by then, there is no reason to use a roster spot on him, and he will certainly be off the roster by the time Week 1 rolls around, otherwise the remaining $4.8M of his base salary will become fully guaranteed.
Thus, while it is unpleasant to imagine, odds are that we will see the official release of Chancellor from the Hawks roster before we get to see another meaningful snap of Seahawks football. During his time in Seattle we got to witness fiery intensity, vicious hits and some absolutely phenomenal football. It’s hard to imagine that it’s already been fifteen months since we’ve seen him on the field, but sadly it appears that his career was indeed ended on a garbage time drive on the same field that took down the rest of the Legion of Boom.