‘Bam Bam’ leader

  • By John Boyle Herald Writer
  • Sunday, August 7, 2011 12:01am
  • Sports

RENTON — A year ago, Kam Chancellor learned from a legend.

Now the second-year safety has the responsibility of replacing him.

Chancellor, a fifth-round pick in 2010, played sparingly as the understudy to four-time Pro Bowler Lawyer Milloy. At 6-foot-3, 232 pounds, Chancellor was cert

ainly an intriguing prospect, but he had few chances to show what he can do. But with Milloy unsigned and seemingly not in the Seahawks’ plans, Chancellor is expected to move into the starting strong safety role alongside free safety Earl Thomas, who is also starting his second season.

“Big shoes to fill,” Chancellor said. “And I’m ready … It’s a big year for me. I can show all the things that Lawyer Milloy has taught me. The things I watched him do on the field, the things he taught me studying film. Just taking what he taught me and showing in the field.”

In fact, Chancellor learned so much from Milloy last season that he still hears the veteran’s voice in his head.

“You can hear him your head, ‘Get to the ball, get to the ball, get a strip,'” Chancellor said. “You just hear him yelling, and now it turns into a habit of doing it.”

And in addition to his football knowledge, Milloy’s leadership seems to have rubbed off on Chancellor as well. Despite being just 23, Chancellor is the oldest safety on Seattle’s roster, and the “old” guy in that group has taken on a leadership role despite his inexperience.

“He’s really taken over the leadership,” defensive coordinator Gus Bradley said. “To have a second-year guy be a strong vocal guy on the defense, it’s impressive. He takes it very seriously, and you can see guys are rallying around him … He’s taken it and run with it.”

Chancellor admits it is strange taking on that role so early, but considering that 14 of the 18 players in Seattle’s secondary are rookies or second-year players, he figures somebody has to do it.

“Other than (Marcus Trufant) and Kelly (Jennings), me and Earl are the veterans of the group,” Chancellor said. “We’re ready for that challenge … I’m still learning myself as well, but I feel like I can take on a leadership role and help the young guys.”

Because of his size and big-hitting ability, Chancellor was given the nickname “Bam Bam” by Bradley, but this year he plans on showing he’s more than just a big hitter. Early in training camp, Chancellor has shown improved coverage skills, and over the past week he had a stretch of three straight practices with an interception.

“He’s really been on fire,” coach Pete Carroll said. “He’s gone three days in a row with a pick and made some big plays. Quickly he’s kind of becoming one of the guys to look to. He’s just the kind of guy that draws players to himself, just in terms of he looks like a natural leader. He’s had a great start to camp and he’s on his stuff and we’re all really looking forward to him continuing to grow.”

In Chancellor and Thomas, “Thunder and Lightning” as teammates are calling them, the Seahawks hope to have found a safety duo that can anchor the defense for years. And despite the youth at that position, the Seahawks are confident safety play will be a strength of the team this year.

“You’ve got young guys, but they’re young guys who have played,” said cornerback Marcus Trufant. “They just bring a lot of energy. Guys are flying around, guys are making big hits, guys are getting picks.”

Bradley, who handed out the “Bam Bam” nickname, certainly sees a bright future for Chancellor, who in his second season will try to show just how much he learned from Milloy.

“He’s throws it down,” Bradley said. “Every coordinator likes that guy who is really a thumper back there. And if get a thumper who can also cover and do some things? Boy.”

Herald Writer John Boyle: jboyle@heraldnet.com. For more Seahawks coverage, check out the Seahawks blog at heraldnet.com/seahawksblog

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Sports

Vote for The Herald’s Prep Athlete of the Week for Feb. 26-March 3

The Athlete of the Week nominees for Feb. 26-March 3. Voting closes… Continue reading

Silvertips prove they can contend with WHL’s best

Everett slugged it out with Eastern Conference contender Moose Jaw in an entertaining 8-7 shootout loss over the weekend.

Glacier Peak’s Jo Lee (2) shoots the ball during a 4A semifinal game between Glacier Peak and Richland at the Tacoma Dome on Friday, March 1, 2024 in Tacoma, Washington. Glacier Peak fell, 70-59. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Five locals named to state basketball all-tournament teams

Everett senior Alana Washington and King’s sophomore Kaleo Anderson led the way with first-team selections.

Seattle Mariners' Dominic Canzone looks for a pitch during a spring training baseball game against the Oakland Athletics, Saturday, March 2, 2024, in Peoria, Ariz. (AP Photo/Lindsey Wasson)
Dominic Canzone ranks high on the list of Mariners’ top breakout candidates

The team is bullish on the bulked-up outfielder’s abilities.

FILE - Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson (3) throws during the first half of an NFL football game against the Detroit Lions, Dec. 16, 2023, in Detroit. The Broncos told Wilson, Monday, March 4, 2024, that they are going to release him next week, just 18 months after signing the Super Bowl-winning quarterback to a five-year, $242 million contract extension. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson, File)
Broncos inform Russell Wilson they’ll release him

Denver will take a record $89 million hit in dead cap charges over the next two seasons.

State basketball roundup for Saturday, March 2

State basketball roundup for Saturday, March 2: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report… Continue reading

Richland’s Landen Northrop (1) shoots the ball during a 4A semifinal game between Glacier Peak and Richland at the Tacoma Dome on Friday, March 1, 2024 in Tacoma, Washington. Glacier Peak fell, 70-59. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Glacier Peak boys fade late against Richland in 4A state semifinals

An 11-0 closing run by the Bombers hands the Grizzlies a 70-59 loss.

Mead’s Teryn Gardner (24) moves with the ball during a 3A semifinal game between Snohomish and Mead at the Tacoma Dome on Friday, March 1, 2024 in Tacoma, Washington. Snohomiosh fell, 56-50. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Snohomish girls get rolling too late, fall to Mead in 3A state semifinals

Snohomish makes a valiant second-half push, but comes up short 56-50 against the well-balanced top seed.

State basketball roundup for Friday, March 1

State basketball prep roundup for Friday, March 1: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To… Continue reading

Seattle Mariners relief pitcher Matt Brash delivers during the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Houston Astros, Sunday, Aug. 20, 2023, in Houston. (AP Photo/Kevin M. Cox)
Mariners get relieving injury update on Matt Brash

The hard-throwing reliever won’t need surgery. Plus, updates on injuries to Gregory Santos and Luis Urias.

Washington quarterback Michael Penix speaks during a press conference at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Friday, March 1, 2024. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Michael Penix Jr. confident he’s answered concerns at NFL combine

Varying national reports have stated the UW quarterback has impressed teams in formal meetings

Snohomish junior Tyler Gildersleeve-Stiles hits the floor trying to get the ball during a WIAA 3A Girls Basketball quarterfinal against Arlington on Thursday, Feb. 29, 2024, at the Tacoma Dome in Tacoma, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Snohomish girls lock down Arlington, advance to 3A state semifinals

The Panthers run away a 45-25 victory in a rubber match between the Wesco rivals.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.