The Seahawks and linebacker Leroy Hill have agreed to terms on a multi-year contract, the team announced Thursday evening.
The Associated Press reported the deal is a six-year agreement that could pay up to $38 million, with $15.5 million guaranteed.
Hill became a free agent when the Seahawks took the franchise tag off his contact status last weekend after drafting rookie linebacker Aaron Curry in the first round.
The fourth-year pro out of Clemson thus was free to sign with any NFL team, but chose to stay with the club that drafted him in the third round in 2005.
Hill is expected to be on the field Friday morning when the team opens a three-day minicamp at its Renton facilty.
His signing allows the Seahawks to retain a strong linebacking trio that also includes Pro Bowl veteran Lofa Tatupu and Curry, the fourth player selected in Saturday's first round of the NFL draft.
The Seahawks admittedly gambled in taking the franchise tag and its guaranteed $8.3 million tender offer away from Hill after adding Curry to the roster, but hoped the move would speed up a negotiating process that had bogged down.
Obviously that paid off, with Hill agreeing to terms Thursday evening. Coach Jim Mora told KJR-950 on Thursday morning he was optimistic Hill was close to signing and explained why it was necessary to get the veteran in camp in time to start learning the team's new defensive schemes.
Taking off the franchise-tag guarantee also gave general manager Tim Ruskell more salary-cap flexibility and he used that to sign veteran cornerback Ken Lucas to a one-year, $2.3 million deal and former Raiders fullback Justin Griffith to a one-year, $700,000 contract.
Mora told KJR on Thursday that Lucas will immediately be inserted into the starting lineup opposite Marcus Trufant when mini-camp opens.
Hill had rejected a six-year, $36 million offer during prior negotiations.
Hill has started 50 of 56 career games, totaling 321 tackles (237 solo), 13.5 sacks, seven forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries.
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