The Seattle Seahawks have rescinded their franchise tag on outside linebacker Leroy Hill, making him a free agent.
A team spokesman confirmed the surprising move Sunday, a day after the team made Wake Forest star outside linebacker Aaron Curry the fourth overall pick in the NFL draft.
It gives Seattle salary cap space of $8.3 million - the value of the guaranteed contract for 2009 the team was obligated to offer Hill as its franchise player.
Curry is expected to get at least $25 million guaranteed in his new contract.
Saturday, Seahawks president and general manager Tim Ruskell said he was still in negotiations for a long-term deal with Hill.
Coach Jim Mora marveled after selecting Curry that the team's defense now has, along with Lofa Tatupu, "three good, young linebackers who are all impact-type players and it is an exciting group. It will be fun to watch them grow together."