LOB legend Kam Chancellor: Super Bowl loss 'haunted' Seattle Seahawks

Seattle Seahawks legend Kam Chancellor said he’s still struggling to come to terms with the team’s stunning Super Bowl XLIX loss to the Patriots.

In a piece published Monday in The Players Tribune, offering advice for players with the Buccaneers and Chiefs set to suit up in Super Bowl LV on Sunday, Chancellor detailed the joy of the Seahawks’ dominant Super Bowl victory over the Broncos in the 2013 season and the pain that came with falling to New England in stunning fashion in the Super Bowl the following year.

Chancellor wrote “I’ll just never understand” the decision to throw on 2nd & goal in the game’s closing seconds, when the Seahawks could have handed the ball off to running back Marshawn Lynch. Quarterback Russell Wilson, of course, was picked off at the goal line with 26 seconds left on the would-be game-winning drive, sealing the Patriots’ 28-24 victory and ending the Seahawks’ hopes of repeating as Super Bowl champions.

“To this day, people still ask me, ‘Why didn’t you give the ball to Marshawn?’” Chancellor wrote. “And to this day, I don't know. I never got a clear answer.”

Chancellor detailed in the piece how right before the play call, he saw then-offensive line coach Tom Cable threw his headset to the ground and stormed off, confusing him. Then he looked to the field, saw that Seattle was on the one-yard line and noticed that Lynch wasn't going to get the ball on that fateful second down.

“I saw Russ in the shotgun and I was like, Wait, what?” Chancellor recalled. “And when I saw Russ pop up to pass it, I was as confused as anybody.”

Chancellor added that the ending to Super Bowl 49 “haunted” the team in his last few years with the them and doesn't think the group was able to get back on the same page after that.

“Even during my last few years in Seattle, it was like a cloud that hung over us,” Chancellor said. “It haunted us — like this constant, unseen, unspoken reminder that we just weren't on the same page anymore. I don't think we ever got that back.”

Chancellor’s former teammate and longtime Seahawks linebacker K.J. Wright, set to be an unrestricted free agent when the new league year begins in March, expressed similar painful feelings over the ending to the game in an Instagram post last week.

“The game comes down to the very end and we lose in the worst way imaginable,” Wright wrote. “To this day I still haven’t gotten over that night. I’ve lost several games but that night still stings me to my core.”

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Since the Super Bowl loss to the Patriots, the Seahawks have been in the playoffs five of six years but haven't advanced past the divisional round.

The Legion of Boom began to officially dissolve in 2017, with a career-ending neck injury for Chancellor and season-ending Achilles injury for cornerback Richard Sherman, who was subsequently released the ensuing offseason and signed with the 49ers.

Free safety Earl Thomas, who’s not currently in the NFL, played four games with the Seahawks in 2018 before breaking his leg, landed on season-ending Injured Reserve and signed with the Ravens the following offseason as an unrestricted free agent.

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