OAKLAND, Calif., Feb. 16 (UPI) -- The Oakland Raiders made lineman Richard Seymour the NFL's highest-paid defender Wednesday, signing him to a two-year deal worth a reported $30 million.
The move enabled the Raiders to avoid having to use its franchise tag on the 11-year veteran for the second straight year.
The Oakland Tribune reported the deal approximates what Seymour would have received this year if he were again "franchised" -- about $15 million. He received $12.9 million last year and under NFL rules would be due a 20 percent raise in 2011 as a franchised player.
The deal makes Seymour the NFL's highest-paid defensive player in terms of annual salary. He was obtained by the Raiders in a 2009 trade with New England in exchange for a 2011 first-round draft pick.
Seymour has logged 10 sacks in two seasons with the Raiders and at times has shown flashes of being a dominant force.