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Kam Chancellor's presence stands out at Seahawks practice

RENTON, Wash. -- The Seattle Seahawks finished off OTAs on Thursday afternoon at the team's practice facility. Here's a breakdown of what I saw during the session.

11:44 - Several veterans -- Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas, Michael Bennett, Cliff Avril, Brandon Browner and Chris Clemons -- are not in attendance. The session is voluntary, so no explanations were provided. Other than Bennett and Clemons, the rest of the players had previously been in attendance.

Thomas Rawls (ankle injury) is not yet participating, but he hangs out with the offensive linemen during individual drills. Smart man. He knows which guys to buddy up to. For all of the criticism aimed at the Seahawks' offensive line, it's worth pointing out that Rawls averaged 2.97 yards before contact last season. Only Le'Veon Bell had a higher number among qualifying running backs.

Left tackle Garry Gilliam is still sidelined after having a cyst removed from his knee. But that doesn't stop him from dancing when "Power" comes on the playlist. When Pete Carroll is coaching 10 years from now at the age of 74, that song is still going to be in the practice rotation.

11:54 - Defensive backs line up three at a time, backpedal and then do a 180 as passes are fired at them. Dropped interceptions equal pushups, and not just for the young guys. Kam Chancellor hits the ground before the drill is over. The Seahawks' defense produced a turnover on 13.9 percent of their opponents' possessions last season, which ranked 10th in the NFL according to Football Outsiders. But Carroll has said this offseason that he wants more takeaways in 2016.

Linebackers, meanwhile, slide from right to left and then turn their hips 90 degrees towards the sideline where a large exercise ball is bounced in their direction. They grab it low and lift. When you can't practice real tackling, this is the next best thing.

11:57 - French Montana's "Don't Panic" blares from the speakers. No word on whether assistant head coach Tom Cable or GM John Schneider requested this song as a message to fans who are worried about the Seahawks' offensive line.

12:21 - During team drills, Chancellor is all over the place. He nearly intercepts Russell Wilson in the end zone on one play. Later, he sprints full speed at Doug Baldwin, who was racing up the sideline. If this were a game with full pads on, and Chancellor was allowed to make contact, Baldwin may have found himself a couple towns over following the collision.

With many veterans absent, Chancellor's leadership is even more evident than usual. When the backups go in, he joins them in the huddle and then retreats to the back of the end zone to take in the action like an assistant coach.

With the holdout last summer, Chancellor had a challenging season. But Carroll has praised him this offseason, and the 28-year-old strong safety remains a key cog in the Seahawks' defense.

12:31 - Russell Wilson rarely draws praise for how strong his arm is, but he has shown time and again -- both during actual games and during this practice -- that he's able to rifle the football into tight windows.

The only thing in the way of Wilson having another monster year is an unproven offensive line. Physically, he's as good as ever. Mentally, he took a huge step in 2015, specifically when operating from the pocket. He's in the same scheme with the same coaches. And his top four receivers from a year ago are back. Expectations are high, as they should be.

12:47 - "All I do is win" is next on the playlist. Raise your hand if this song brought the house down at your wedding. Anyone? No? Only me? OK, let's move on.

12:53 - The offense and defense battle with officials during the final portion of practice. Wide receiver Jermaine Kearse is called for a push-off on cornerback Trovon Reed, much to the delight of the players on defense.

Wide receiver Antwan Goodley makes a diving grab near the sideline, causing Baldwin to sprint across the field and congratulate him. The officials rule Goodley out of bounds, but Carroll overrules them. I guess he has that kind of power around these parts.

The offense is whistled for another penalty as linebackers coach Michael Barrow does the, "Push 'em back, push 'em back, waaaaay back!" cheer over and over again. No one seems to be paying any attention to him, but I'm not sure I've ever seen a grown man happier. This may be my favorite part of the practice.

Another flag is thrown, but this one's on the defense. Kearse lets the official know he appreciates the call. "Your lunch is on me," he yells out a few times.

1:29 - That's a wrap. Next up for the Seahawks is a three-day mandatory minicamp next week from Tuesday to Thursday.