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Jimmy Graham's arrival leads to Tony Moeaki's departure

Tight end Tony Moeaki, who signed with the Seahawks as an injury replacement in November, is following former defensive coordinator Dan Quinn to Atlanta as he signed with the Falcons in free agency on Thursday.


Tony Moeaki signing with the Atlanta Falcons on Thursday was about as surprising as the veteran tight end joining the Seahawks in November because Zach Miller was about to be placed on injured reserve.

Moeaki played in six games and caught eight passes, but re-signing him when he became an unrestricted free agent this month was not a priority because the Seahawks acquired three-time Pro Bowl tight end Jimmy Graham in a trade with the New Orleans Saints on the first day of the league's free-agency period.

The Seahawks also have re-signed tight end Anthony McCoy, who spent the past two seasons on IR after damaging his Achilles tendon. And they still have Luke Willson, who stepped as the starter for the since-released Miller last season; Cooper Helfet, who became the backup; and RaShaun Allen, who spent most of last season on the practice squad.

"We love Cooper and RaShaun, and we were able to re-sign Anthony McCoy," general manager John Schneider said last week. "And you saw the year that Luke had."

Willson caught 22 passes for a 16.5-yard average and three touchdowns during the regular season and added six receptions for a 13.5-yard average and TD in the playoffs.

On Graham, Schneider quickly added, "This is an offensive weapon that we're adding. This is a guy that's a big-time difference maker at his position."

So Moeaki was put in the position of looking for a new NFL home. He found it in Atlanta, where former Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn is now the Falcons' head coach. The Falcons also announced on Thursday that they have signed former Denver Broncos tight end Jacob Tamme.

The Falcons also have signed defensive end/linebacker O'Brien Schofield, another of the Seahawks' unrestricted free agents; and offensive lineman Jared Smith, who was a seventh-round draft choice by the Seahawks in 2013 but spent his rookie season on IR and was waived injured last July.

Moeaki becomes the seventh of the Seahawks' unrestricted free agents to sign with another team, joining cornerback Byron Maxwell (Philadelphia Eagles), guard James Carpenter (New York Jets), linebacker Malcolm Smith (Oakland Raiders), safety Jeron Johnson (Washington Redskins), wide receiver Bryan Walters (Jacksonville Jaguars) and Schofield.

A look at the projected Seattle Seahawks roster for the 2015 season including new faces from free agency and trade. This gallery is updated with every offseason transaction.

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