The Seahawks and Jarran Reed got bad (but expected) news when the NFL suspended the star defensive tackle for six games due to violating the league’s personal conduct policy. A woman accused Reed of assaulting her back in April, 2017, but no arrest was made, no charges filed. Regardless, the NFL deemed it necessary to sit Reed for six games just as it did to Ezekiel Elliott in 2018, and Seattle prepared for a month-and-a-half without him.
Combined with trading Frank Clark to the Chiefs, the Seahawks were looking to replace 22.5 sacks from a year ago. Jadeveon Clowney was added just before the season and his impact has been felt more in run defense than QB pressure. Ziggy Ansah was signed to a one-year deal and missed the first two games while barely playing in the third.
Seattle came into Sunday ranked 29th in pressure and they sacked Baker Mayfield zero times in their 32-28 win over the Browns. No sacks for Clowney, no sacks for Ansah, and no QB hits for anybody on the Seahawks. But Seattle prevailed and they are 5-1 despite having an underwhelming pass rush all season long.
And now they’ve added Reed back to a defense that desperately needs a player who can help create pressure on opposing quarterbacks.
The Seahawks host Earl Thomas and the Baltimore Ravens next Sunday at 1:25 Pacific. Lamar Jackson was sacked 15 times over the first five games and the Bengals got to him one time in Sunday’s 23-17 win for the Ravens. Jackson has thrown four touchdowns and five interceptions over his last four games though, slowing down his hot start to the season. Seattle picked off Mayfield three times — mainly on dropped passes and deflections — but were unable to finish off several near-sacks that could have created key stops.
Against a quarterback who can elude at Jackson’s level, they’ll need someone like Reed even more.
Jarran Reed had 50 tackles, 10.5 sacks, and 24 QB hits in 2018. Just like Clowney, Ansah, Quinton Jefferson, and Al Woods, he is set to be a free agent in March. Now would be a good time to get a pass rush going.