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Byron Maxwell's contract a priority for Seahawks

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Since 1995, Richard Sherman's 18.1 postseason passer rating allowed is the lowest of any player.

As the Seattle Seahawks prepare for the offseason, though, it's the other starting cornerback on the front office's radar.

General manager John Schneider made it clear that bringing back impending free agent Byron Maxwell will be a top priority next month.

"I think he is going to be highly sought after and he should be," Schneider said last week, via The Seattle Times. "But we would at least like to have the opportunity to retain him."

In addition to offering ideal size and sure tackling ability at 6-foot-1 and 207 pounds, Maxwell has been effective outside as well as the slot.

With defensive coordinator Dan Quinn likely to recruit Maxwell to Atlanta, re-signing the cornerback could prove to be a challenge for Schneider.

The Seahawks already have the NFL's highest-paid secondary with Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor signed to lucrative long-term deals. Shelling out in excess of $5 million annually for Maxwell will prove tricky with quarterback Russell Wilson and middle linebacker Bobby Wagner also in need of new contracts.

Don't be surprised if Pete Carroll opts to elevate talented but oft-injured 2013 fifth-round draft pick Tharold Simon into the starting lineup, allowing Maxwell to chase a high-dollar contract in another locale.

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