Patrick Kerney: From Falcons to Seahawks?

Let the free agency speculation continue...On Tuesday, the NFL Network reported that the Seahawks and the Broncos are the two teams at the head of the hunt for the services of Falcons DE Patrick Kerney. The 6'5". 273-pound Kerney will be a free agent on Friday after voiding the final two years of his contract.

He played for the Falcons when current Seattle team president Tim Ruskell worked with Rich McKay there in 2004, and when new Seahawks assistant/secondary coach Jim Mora was Atlanta's head coach.

The 30-year-old NFL veteran, a first-round pick in 1999 out of Virginia, missed games due to injury for the first time in his career in 2006 (he had 105 consecutive NFL starts before missing the last seven games with a torn pectoral muscle), but still had 4.5 sacks in that short season.

Kerney is considered to be one of the top free-agent DEs available. For the Seahawks, ends Grant Wistrom, Bryce Fisher and Darryl Tapp combined to sack enemy quarterbacks only 11 times in 2006. OLB Julian Peterson led the team with 10 sacks. In that regard, Kerney could be a major asset – he amassed at least seven sacks per season from 2001 through 2005, and put up double figures in 2001 and 2002.

"I've only got about five more years to play, and I've got to make the most out of it," Kerney recently told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "As great as it would have been to finish my career with Atlanta, where everybody, especially the fans, have been great to me in my eight years there, the business side is there."


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