With Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor getting injured in 2016, the Legion of Boom wasn’t at its best … Now, all the key elements are back in place
First impressions turned into lasting memories for Kris Richard as he met each of the three players who would become not only the founding members of the Legion of Boom, but the ones who will define it forever.
Arriving first was free safety Earl Thomas, who on April 23, 2010, walked into the VMAC in Renton a day after the Seahawks drafted him with the 14th overall choice. Thomas walked in “like he already owned the place,’’ recalls Richard, who then was in his first year as Seattle’s assistant defensive-backs coach and now is defensive coordinator.
“Which was really cool because it wasn’t disrespectful. It was just that it wasn’t too big for him. His plan, from the first conversation we had, was that he wanted to be the best safety (in the NFL), period. Actually, he wanted to be the best defensive back — he thinks he can play cornerback, too.’’
Next came strong safety Kam Chancellor, who arrived two days after Thomas and struck Richard as displaying “a maturity kind of beyond his years. Just an understanding, a quietness about him, a peacefulness. Just an old-soul type.’’
A year later came cornerback Richard Sherman, who had wowed Seattle coaches with his understanding of football during his 15-minute official interview with the team at the NFL combine a couple months earlier.
“So bubbly, sincere, intelligent,’’ Richard said. “He’s just always been really smart.’’
Each also arrived having something to prove — Chancellor and Sherman the obvious aim to show they shouldn’t have fallen to the fifth round.
And Thomas? Richard laughs that even though he’d been taken as high as he was, Thomas thought he still had been, well, doubted.
“He felt he should have been the first overall pick and that no one should have been picked after him,’’ Richard said with a smile.
Once together, they devised a simple, if difficult to achieve, goal.
“They set out to be the best ever,’’ Richard said.
By any measure, they have at least come close.
With Sherman, Thomas and Chancellor having each…