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The Seattle Seahawks cut ties on Friday with star cornerback Richard
Sherman Jeff
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, who became one of the NFL's premier cornerbacks
during his seven seasons with the team.

The team informed Sherman early in the day he would be released, and he
confirmed the decision in a text message to The Associated Press. The move
appeared to be building after he met with the team Wednesday to discuss his
future. Sherman declined to comment after the meeting.

"Thank you for helping win championships, shape our culture and define
success in Seattle," the team said in a statement announcing the decision.

"We love you and your unwavering competitiveness, confidence and fierce
passion for football and life. For that Sven
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, you will always be a Hawk!"

Sherman was an overlooked fifth-round draft pick who went on to become a
two-time All-Pro who helped anchor a defense that was the league's best for
several years.

He will be 30 years old going into next season and coming off an Achilles
tendon injury that cost him half of the 2017 season.

But the biggest reason for his release was financial. Sherman was due $13
million for the 2018 season and his release gives Seattle a salary cap savings
of about $11 million. Sherman was released with a "failed physical" injury
designation.

Sherman issued a statement later Friday thanking the Seahawks for "taking a
chance."

"As this chapter comes to a close, I am looking forward to what the future
holds," Sherman said.

Sherman became a star in Seattle, bringing a brash attitude and willingness
to speak out on any topic to go along with his stellar play. His best seasons
came in 2013 and 2014 when Seattle made two Super Bowl appearances and he has 32
interceptions.

This may not be an end for Sherman and the Seahawks, depending on what he
finds in free agency. Seattle could be open to bringing Sherman back at a
reduced salary.

Sherman was open to the idea of a new place to call home last offseason when
Seattle engaged in trade discussions surrounding Sherman Youth
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, but said his preference was to remain with
the Seahawks.

What's still to be answered is how much of an impact the Achilles injury will
have. Sherman has never been the fastest cornerback, often using his exquisite
technique and smarts to make up for less than elite speed. But recovery from
Achilles injuries can often be troublesome and Sherman also had a cleanup
surgery on his opposite ankle during the offseason.

The questions about Sherman's health account for Seattle's position. The
Seahawks don't want to be paying a premium price for a cornerback entering the
final year of his contract with an injury concern. Seattle could be sacrificing
something greater, though. Sherman has been a locker-room leader and mentor to
younger players. Shaquill Griffin spoke regularly about Sherman's influence last
year.

But it's clear the Seahawks are a team in transition, although it also
remains to be seen how significant this makeover will be. Seattle already traded
Michael Bennett to Philadelphia for two late-round draft picks and a little-used
wide receiver. Kam Chancellor and Cliff Avril both have neck injuries, and it's
uncertain if they'll play again. Earl Thomas said at the Pro Bowl he wants a new
contract and may hold out. Seattle also released cornerback Jeremy Lane on
Friday. The move with Lane will save Seattle $4.75 million against the salary
cap in 2018.

About the only sure thing for the defense is the return of All-Pro linebacker
Bobby Wagner. General manager John Schneider Ivan
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, speaking at the NFL combine, called it a
"constant puzzle."

"You're trying to put stuff together all the time," he said. "It's a big
challenge."

Broncos linebacker Von Miller is potentially in hot water after a
social media post in which he poses with a bloody hammerhead shark that was
caught on a fishing expedition.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has received the images
and video from the trip and is "looking into whether or not a violation occurred
in this incident," said Carol Lyn Parrish, the commission's public information
coordinator. No further details were available.

There's video of the group trying to put the shark back in the water. The
harvesting of hammerhead sharks is a second-degree misdemeanor in Florida. It's
punishable by up to a $500 fine and 60 days in jail Harrison
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, as determined by a judge.

Miller's agent couldn't be reached for comment Wednesday on the
investigation.

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