Seattle Seahawks Re-Sign Safety Kam Chancellor as Next Step in Perfect Long-Term Plan

Kam Chancellor is the first of the big four to re-sign in Seattle.

After adding Cliff Avril, Michael Bennett, Percy Harvin and Antoine Winfield this off-season, the excitement surrounding the Seattle Seahawks was tinged by the wariness of how they would be able to re-sign all of their current young stars who would be looking for new contracts.

Of the new signings, only Percy Harvin’s deal will have any real bearing on what they can do in the future. Cliff Avril signed a two-year deal worth $13 million, while Bennett and Winfield are both only expected to be in Seattle for this year. When they agreed to those contracts, the Seahawks understood that safety Kam Chancellor, tackle Breno Giacomini and wide receiver Golden Tate would be the headliners who could hit free agency next season.

While Giacomini and Tate are good role players, only Chancellor would really have been seen as a big loss. Even if Chancellor had made it through this season without a new contract, the cap hits from Bennett and Winfield would have freed up space to re-sign him next season.

The Seahawks haven’t let it get that far however. Today they re-signed Chancellor to a contract that totals five years, $17 million guaranteed and $28 million in total.

That is a more than affordable price for the best young strong safety in the NFL.

Sherman is the first of the Seahawks’ secondary to sign his second contract with the team. Brandon Browner will be a restricted free agent next off-season, at which time he should see a similar long-term contract offer, while Earl Thomas and Richard Sherman won’t be unrestricted free agents until the following season.

Browner shouldn’t command a huge deal and isn’t an irreplaceable piece of the defense as a whole. He is a very good player, but not irreplaceable like Sherman and Thomas. Whether they get a contract done with Browner or not, the Seahawks should have plenty of cap space to re-sign Sherman and Thomas in 2015.

With the savings that will come from Russell Wilson’s rookie contract and both Chris Clemons and Cliff Avril’s cap hits coming off the roster, the Seahawks will likely have to let Sherman and Thomas play out the final years of their rookie deals before locking one up with the franchise tag and signing the other to a long-term deal. That is presuming they are unable to sign both to long-term contracts.

Either way, this move from the Seahawks to re-sign Chancellor is just another step in a very well laid-out long-term plan that allows them to maximize their short-term potential without sacrificing their long-term gain.

You can follow Cian Fahey on twitter @Cianaf

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