Sherman signs huge extension with Seahawks

It was only a matter of time before the Seahawks signed All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman to a contract extension, and that time arrived on Wednesday.

While continuing to prepare for the three-day NFL Draft that begins Thursday, the Seahawks took care of another significant priority Wednesday by signing All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman to a contract extension.

The announcement was scheduled to be made during an 11 a.m. news conference at Virginia Mason Athletic Center.

Sherman, a fifth-round draft choice in 2011, was entering the final season of his rookie contract and general manager John Schneider had said repeatedly that signing Sherman to an extension was one of this top priorities this offseason. Last week, All-Pro free safety Earl Thomas was signed to an extension that made him the highest-paid safety in the NFL.

Sherman stepped into the starting lineup midway through his rookie season – as a third-option replacement because Marcus Trufant and Walter Thurman went down with season-ending injuries. But in the past three seasons, no one in the league has more interceptions (20) and passes defensed (60) than the 6-foot-3 Sherman.

And last season was his best, as Sherman led the NFL with eight interceptions and then made what has been dubbed the "Immaculate Deflection" to ice the Seahawks' six-point victory over the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship game. Sherman tipped a Colin Kaepernick pass that was intended for Michael Crabtree in the end zone and linebacker Malcolm Smith made the interception with 22 seconds remaining in the Seahawks' 23-17 victory.

Sherman then had three tackles and a pass defensed as the Seahawks' No. 1-ranked defense throttled the highest-scoring offense in NFL history during a 43-8 victory over the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII.

"Everything Richard has accomplished, it's a testament to being where you're supposed to be," defensive backs coach Kris Richard said recently. "That's when the good plays typically happen."

Not to mention good things. After Sherman signs his extension he is expected to be among the highest-paid cornerbacks in the NFL, if not the highest-paid player at his position.