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Would the Seahawks extend DT Jarran Reed before LB Bobby Wagner?

Seahawks DT Jarran Reed finished his 2018 season with 10.5 sacks. (AP)

Middle linebacker Bobby Wagner and defensive tackle Jarran Reed are the two biggest names awaiting a contract extension from the Seahawks. All eyes have been on Wagner, who is not only representing himself, but who is also expected to sign a record-breaking deal. But what are the odds Seattle gets a deal done with Reed before their All-Pro defensive leader?

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According to 710 ESPN Seattle’s Brock Huard, it wouldn’t be a bad idea.

“I think in many ways his deal is easier than Bobby’s,” Huard said of Reed. “You’ve got a pretty good range. If you want to know market value and where you sit, there at least are more data points for Jarran Reed and his agent and the Seahawks to work through, rather than the one outlier in Bobby Wagner’s deal — that outlier being, obviously, C.J. Mosley in New York making $18 million a year.”

A week before Mosley’s deal, the San Francisco 49ers made Kwon Alexander the league’s highest-paid linebacker at $13.5 million per year. An extension for Wagner at that time might have come in at around $14 to $15 million per year. But now that the Jets have signed Mosley to a five-year, $85 million deal, Wagner – a more productive player than both Alexander and Mosley – could command a salary of more than $17 million.

That’s why for Huard, there’s another factor to consider with Reed’s impending deal: Chiefs defensive tackle Chris Jones. Jones is in the midst of a contract holdout with Kansas City. The risk of paying Reed later, rather than sooner, would be that Jones’ eventual deal re-sets the market for defensive tackles, much like Mosley’s contract reset the market for inside linebackers.

“I think for the Seahawks it makes an awful lot of sense,” Huard said. “We were chatting about this with John Clayton last week, and I said if you’re the Seahawks, don’t you want to get this deal done before Chris Jones in Kansas City? Kansas City pays a lot of money. We’ve seen that in what they paid Frank Clark. Chris Jones is a young player that’s been a little more productive than Jarran. But what if he resets the market? You don’t want that. Go get Jarran done when you’ve got a pretty decent range. If you’ve got to pay him some significant money now, I guarantee you in two years those dollars are going to be cheaper. Could it get done ahead of Wagner? Yeah, and I think mostly because there’s a whole lot more market conditions to help you factor in some of the details about that deal.”

Reed, 26, is entering the final year of a four-year, $4.8 million rookie deal he signed in April 2016. Last year with Seattle, Reed tallied a career-high 10.5 sacks (trailing only defensive end Frank Clark), 50 tackles, and 24 quarterback hits.

Listen to the Brock and Salk Show weekday mornings from 7-10 a.m. on 710 ESPN Seattle. Subscribe to the podcast here.

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