Per Schefter, Seattle is looking for a trade partner but will release the 28-year-old if it cannot swing a deal. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com is hearing the same thing, and RapSheet adds that Reed was seeking a long-term deal, while the Seahawks were hoping he would convert some of his 2020 salary into a signing bonus in order to reduce his $13.5M cap number (Twitter link). Although those types of restructures are common and generally not difficult to execute, since they guarantee the player previously un-guaranteed money, Rapoport says the situation went to a “bad spot” when Seattle wouldn’t agree to an extension.
Moving on from Reed will create $8.5M of cap space, though it will saddle the club with a $5M dead cap hit. Clearly, however, Seattle values the cap savings more than their 2016 second-rounder at this point.
Reed had a breakout campaign in 2018, piling up 50 tackles and 10.5 sacks. But he was suspended for the first six games of the 2019 season after violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy, and he managed just 2.5 sacks that year. His sack total increased to 6.5 last season, and he played a full 16-game slate, but Pro Football Focus was not high on his work. PFF graded him as the 89th-best interior defender out of 125 qualifiers, and he did not receive high marks for either his run defense or his pass rushing abilities.
The Seahawks signed Kerry Hyder several days ago and brought back Benson Mayowa, but Reed’s departure will still leave a pass rushing void (despite his low PFF score). 2020 trade acquisition Carlos Dunlap is still on the market after being released by Seattle several weeks ago, so perhaps the ‘Hawks will circle back to him. They could also ask 2019 first-rounder L.J. Collier to handle more snaps at DT with Reed out of the picture.