“In free agency, the one worry you go into it with is that the only teams that would be interested in you would be ones that are sort of down on the bottom of the NFL looking for a building block,” Kerney told the assembled media. “Luckily that wasn’t the case. It came down to (Seattle) and Denver and both were winning organizations.
“Seattle has been to the playoffs the past four years, the Super Bowl two years ago and has a lot of talented players still in the prime of their careers. That was the deciding factor along with the character of the guys I’ve met around here.”
There were some concerns about Kerney’s torn pectoral muscle, but the nine-year veteran quickly put that to rest noting that he had started lifting three weeks ago – a full two months ahead of schedule.
After Kerney met with head coach Mike Holmgren and general manager Tim Ruskell he and his agent hopped a plane and headed back to Atlanta, but they were heaving on Seahawks defensive coordinator.
“We really didn’t get to spend a whole lot of time together when we were (in Seattle),” Kerney said. “I was familiar with Bill Johnson in Denver and I wanted to be able to get enough time with coach Marshall to develop more of a relationship and see what he was all about.
“We went over the roster, what each guy brings, the scheme he likes to run and he sold me on it.”
Holmgren added that Kerney is expected to man the left end spot that he was so used to playing in Atlanta the past nine years.
“We rotate a lot of our defensive lineman and Bryce Fisher is already there,” Holmgren said. “We have a rotation system so we want to keep Patrick fresh just like the other guys. Clearly we didn’t do this to have him standing next to me on the sidelines.
“When we’ve played against (Atlanta), and I’ve told him this, that in our preparation, we always had to prepare for him. He’s a special player because he’s a great athlete, he’s a great football player, but he plays the game like we like the players to play the game. He gives us everything he’s got, leaves nothing on the field and that’s how he was as an opponent.
“I’m just very, very happy he’s on my side now.”
Ruskell also mentioned that the city of Seattle is a reason that the team has had success in drawing some of the top free agent talent over the past two or three years.
“We’ve got a beautiful city and a great coach,” Ruskell said. “I don’t know what it was like before I got here, but there are a lot of things to sell. I always say, ‘if we can get them here we’ve got a heck of a chance’.
“Seattle sells itself and the team sells itself. We’re very proud of that and also the fact that, in a lot of cases, they are calling us. That’s when you know you’ve got the thing going the way you want it to go.”
Now the Seahawks will turn their sights toward players that can help them along the offensive line, at tight and in the secondary.
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