Seattle Seahawks Inside Slant 2009-04-10

The Seattle Seahawks held their first veterans minicamp of the Jim Mora era, but the team's new head coach officially began his 2009 campaign without the services of linebacker Leroy Hill.

The Seahawks designated Hill as their franchise free agent. Hill was tendered an $8.3 million offer, but has not signed the tender. The two sides still remain in negotiations on a long-team deal that appears to have stalled and won't be revisited until after the draft is held later this month.

The 26-year-old Hill would have to sign the franchise tender or a waiver to attend the voluntary camp. Instead, Hill chose not to attend.

Mora said there's no animosity between Hill and the Seahawks.

"I did not expect him to be (here)," Mora said. "We would like him to be here. We would like him to be getting this work. It's hard to ever duplicate the things we're doing here, the first steps of the process. But that's a business decision he made, and I respect that."

Mora also said he's been in contact with Hill and the linebacker has shown his face around the practice facility.

With Hill not around, Julian Peterson recently traded to Detroit and D.D. Lewis out with an injury, veteran linebacker Lofa Tatupu has had two young guns as wingman during practice in Lance Laury and Will Herring.

With Hill out and Seattle looking thin at linebacker, it appears Wake Forest linebacker Aaron Curry remains a likely target for the Seahawks if he's available with the No. 4 overall pick.

However, Mora wasn't giving out any hints this week.

"We haven't narrowed it down yet. We will start our intense draft meetings on Monday. But we've got some needs and we'll have a chance to address them.

"But specifically, I can't tell you yet. I can't tell you what direction exactly we're going to go. We're always going to look to add quality players to this team. We're always going to look to add impact players. Sitting at No. 4, we should be able to add an impact player."

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: April 10, 2009