March 10, 2016

The Seattle Seahawks retained one of their key defensive starters by agreeing to terms with cornerback Jeremy Lane.

Lane and the Seahawks reached agreement on the deal on Wednesday night after the opening of free agency. Terms were not released by the team. NFL.com reported it was a four-year deal.

Lane quickly moved into the starting lineup opposite Richard Sherman last season after he finished recovering from serious arm and knee injuries suffered in Seattle's Super Bowl loss to New England. Lane's performance was impressive enough that Seattle benched and later cut veteran Cary Williams.

Lane appeared in six regular-season games and started both of Seattle's playoff games last season. Since being a sixth-round pick of the Seahawks in 2012, Lane has started six of 41 career games.

Lane suffered a serious broken arm and a torn ACL on the same play of Super Bowl 49 after he intercepted Tom Brady, but was injured as he was tackled near the sideline on the return. He started the 2015 season on the physically unable to perform list before returning in Week 12.

''It was tough watching because last year at Super Bowl time I knew I had a good opportunity before that game the next year that I would probably be the starting corner, but then I got hurt,'' Lane said after the season. ''I knew it would be a long journey, but I never gave up and I finally got the opportunity and I'm grateful for it.''

Lane becomes the second defensive starter the Seahawks have retained this week after locking up defensive tackle Ahtyba Rubin on a three-year contract on Monday.

The decision to keep Lane indicates the importance Seattle has placed on keeping players developed through its system rather than adding from the outside - especially in the secondary.

Williams was the most recent example of a defensive back being brought in, but struggling to learn Seattle's defensive system and the technique played by the cornerbacks.

Having been developed by Seattle, Lane fully understands the system and what is required of playing in one of the top defensive back units in the NFL.

''I think I showed enough, but I didn't show all I've got,'' Lane said. ''I've still got more in me. I felt like I was getting better every week.''

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and AP NFL Twitter feed: http://twitter.com/AP-NFL

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