Denver lets Seahawks have Herndon

  • By Scott M. Johnson / Herald Writer
  • Tuesday, March 22, 2005 9:00pm
  • Sports

The Seattle Seahawks’ free-agent haul officially reached four Tuesday when the team received word that the Denver Broncos would not match an offer made to restricted free agent Kelly Herndon.

Herndon, a cornerback, is the fourth defensive player Seattle has added since the start of free agency three weeks ago. He joins outside linebacker Kevin Bentley (formerly of Cleveland), defensive end Bryce Fisher (St. Louis) and defensive tackle Chartric Darby (Tampa Bay).

Herndon receives a five-year, $15 million deal from the Seahawks, who were looking to replace starting cornerback Ken Lucas.

Herndon, 28, is expected to start, along with Marcus Trufant. He had two interceptions and a team-high 20 passes defensed while starting all 16 games with the Broncos last season.

Even though Herndon was a restricted free agent, the Seahawks won’t have to give Denver any compensation because the University of Toledo product was never selected in a draft. Denver had a week to match Seattle’s offer, but Broncos coach Mike Shanahan announced Tuesday that his team did not intend to do so.

The Seahawks are still courting free agents, with defensive ends Marcellus Wiley (Dallas) and Courtney Brown (Cleveland) among the most recent players to visit. Former Tampa Bay wide receiver Joe Jurevicius also has met with Seahawks officials.

Among the Seahawks’ own free agents, center Robbie Tobeck, guard Chris Gray, wide receiver Alex Bannister, defensive end Brandon Mitchell, offensive lineman Jerry Wunsch, quarterback Brock Huard and punters Tom Rouen and Ken Walter remain unsigned.

Linebacker Anthony Simmons and right tackle Chris Terry, who have been released by the team in cost-cutting moves, are also still looking for homes.

Reinfeldt named VP for football administration: Mike Reinfeldt, the former All-Pro safety and AFC defensive player of the year in 1979, has been named vice president of football administration by the Seattle Seahawks.

The 51-year-old Reinfeldt was Seattle’s senior vice president from 1999-2004 but left amid a front-office dispute.

He returned as a consultant last month, after the firing of former president of football operations Bob Whitsitt, and helped re-sign quarterback Matt Hasselbeck and offensive tackle Walter Jones.

“It just creates a real solid situation with contract negotiation and salary-cap analysis, not to mention the fact that he played a lot of football and he has good ideas about personnel as well,” coach Mike Holmgren, in Hawaii for the NFL owners meeting, told the News-Tribune of Tacoma on Monday.

Reinfeldt was instrumental in hiring Holmgren as coach of the Green Bay Packers in 1992. Holmgren lured Reinfeldt to Seattle seven years later when he became coach of the Seahawks.

“It’s so good to have him back in the building,” Holmgren said. “I trust his judgment a lot.”

Items from The Associated Press were included in this report.

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