Seahawks sign Holmgren to two-year extenstionBy John Clayton

The Seahawks re-signed their most important 2007 free agent Tuesday afternoon when they reached a two-year contract extension for coach Mike Holmgren, whose contract was set to expire after this season.

Holmgren's agent, Bob LaMonte, finalized the contract extension one week after flying to Seattle last Tuesday to meet with Seahawks officials. Terms of the contract weren't available, but Holmgren was negotiating from a position of strength. With a $7 million salary in 2006, Holmgren was negotiating as the highest paid coach in the league.

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Holmgren's new contract extension will keep him in Seattle through the 2008 season.
In 1999, Holmgren signed a record-breaking eight-year, $35 million deal as the coach-general manager of the franchise. He's been to four playoffs during his first seven years and had his first trip to the Super Bowl as the Seahawks coach this past season. The Super Bowl loss to Pittsburgh was hard on him, and it initially gave him second thoughts about wanting to sign an extension. At the Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Holmgren still wasn't sure about re-signing.

About a month ago, after relaxing and taking some time off, Holmgren told LaMonte to start working on extension. LaMonte did some preliminary work on a deal in April. He entered last Tuesday's meeting optimistic that something would get done within a week.

Terms of the deal weren't known other than it was a two-year extension. It is not known whether or not Holmgren was able to get a clause in his contract that would allow him to go to another team if they offer him the position of general manager. Holmgren lost his general manager's title a couple years ago, and he wants to be a general manager again at some point.

The Seahawks have a general manager in Tim Ruskell so Holmgren would have to go elsewhere to get that type of job.

It is a little ironic that the two-year extension will take him to 10 years with the Seahawks. When Seahawks owner Paul Allen first started to talk contract with Holmgren in 1999, he wanted to sign Holmgren to a 10-year deal. Tuesday's extension gave the owner and the coach exactly what each wanted.

John Clayton is a senior NFL writer for