Another Defender Down - Okeafor a Cardinal

The Arizona Cardinals have reached an agreement with former Seahawks defensive end Chike Okeafor. The terms of the five-year contract have not been made official by the team. Sources say that Okeafor received a comparable offer from the Seahawks, but chose the Cardinals and their up-and-coming defensive coordinator, Clancy Pendergast.

Acquired by the Seahawks as a free agent before the 2003 season, the former San Francisco 49er led the team in sacks both of his seasons in Seattle despite a middling pass rush, totaling 16.5 sacks in those two seasons.

“Chike provides all of the key ingredients you look for in a defensive lineman," said Cardinals head coach Dennis Green. "He's smart, hard-working, physical and plays with a lot of intensity. We played against him twice last year and were able to appreciate first-hand his outstanding abilities.”

With Okeafor's departure and Carolina 's recent signing of CB Ken Lucas, the Seahawks have lost their sack leader (Okeafor with 8.5) and their leader in interceptions (Lucas with 6) on a defense that ranked 26th overall in the NFL in 2004. The Seahawks also released OLB Anthony Simmons and S Damien Robinson last Friday.

The Seahawks are rumored to be speaking to Baltimore MLB Edgerton Hartwell, Miami CB Patrick Surtain and Tennessee CB Andre Dyson this week. No official word on a replacement for Okeafor in the free-agent market, although the team is thought to be speaking to St. Louis DE Bryce Fisher this week as well. Top Stories