Kam Chancellor's deal sends message

The Seattle Seahawks' contract extension for safety Kam Chancellor goes against the grain in the NFC West.

The rest of the division has been slashing salary at the position.

NFC West Safeties: Average Per Year

Arizona cut starters Adrian Wilson and Kerry Rhodes. St. Louis cut starter Quintin Mikell while watching the other starter, Craig Dahl, sign a modest deal with San Francisco. The 49ers watched Pro Bowl free safety Dashon Goldson leave for Tampa Bay in free agency without making an effort to keep him.

The exact figures for Chancellor's new deal aren't yet known, but he will certainly become the highest-paid safety in the NFC West. ESPN's John Clayton reported the terms as five years and $35 million. Chancellor had one season remaining on his deal.

Chancellor turned 25 this month. That differentiated him from Wilson (33), Mikell (32), Rhodes (30), and Goldson (28). Another difference: Chancellor was drafted by his team's current coach and general manager. The other safeties listed were left behind from previous GMs and coaching staffs.

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider made it clear during a news conference Monday that they were personally invested in Chancellor's development from 2010 fifth-round draft choice to team leader and Pro Bowl-caliber safety. For them, rewarding Chancellor reiterated the message that Seattle will reward its own players -- a point that arguably needed reinforcing after the team sprung for outsider Percy Harvin, among others, this offseason.