Seahawks’ sack total may not jump, but Jarran Reed will have an impact

Oct 18, 2019, 12:13 AM
Seahawks DT Jarran Reed...
Seahawks defensive tackle Jarran Reed returns Sunday from a six-game suspension. (Getty)

The Seahawks have struggled to sack opposing quarterbacks this season. Jarran Reed, Seattle’s defensive tackle who had 10 1/2 sacks a season ago, returns Sunday from a six-game suspension.

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Seems like all the reason to think the Seahawks will finally start piling up the sacks, right?

Maybe, but maybe not.

The topic of Reed’s return has been a popular one this week, and it’s easy to see why. The Seahawks are tied for 26th out of the NFL’s 32 teams with just 10 sacks this season, even though Pro Bowl defensive ends Jadeveon Clowney and Ziggy Ansah were their biggest acquisitions going into the season. Clowney has just one sack – none since Week 1 – though he has still been a force on Seattle’s defensive line. Ansah also has just one sack, but he’s only played four games after a slow start to the season following shoulder surgery.

The 6-foot-3, 306-pound Reed should have an impact now that’s he back, but Dave Wyman and Jim Moore of 710 ESPN Seattle’s Bob, Dave and Moore said to temper expectations.

“It’s not like all of the sudden they’re going to get five sacks (in one game),” said Wyman, a color commentator for Seahawks radio broadcasts and a former NFL linebacker. “… We’re probably asking a little bit too much of him.”

Added Moore: “I don’t expect him to be in football shape although he told Pete Carroll and the media that he’s been working out every day and he’s so excited. … He’s going to be fired up to get in there so he’ll certainly be there starting (and) in the rotation. I don’t anticipate, though, that he’s going to have the majority of the defensive snaps while he’s out there.”

That being said, it’s hard not to think Reed’s presence will at the very least open up opportunities for Seattle’s other pass rushers.

“This guy is one of the better interior defensive linemen in the league so of course you’re happy to have him back. Maybe (opponents are) going to have to double team him and that will free up the guys on the outside,” Wyman said of Reed.

“Just having one more player of his caliber on that defensive line,” said Moore, “it’s bound to help Ansah and Clowney, Quinton Jefferson, all these different guys. I think the sacks are going to pick up this week.”

Wyman said that even if Seattle’s sack total doesn’t start climbing Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens, it wouldn’t necessarily be a bad sign.

“It’s just not been a big part of this defense in the first place,” he said of sacks. “The way they play defense, it’s more about taking the ball away and making big plays in key moments.

“… It’s good that you’ve got a good, sound run player (in Reed). He’s really both – he can rush the passer – but with this (Ravens) offense coming in here, they’re so good and you have to be gap-sound. … This is going to be an interesting game.”

You can hear the full conversation at the top of the first hour of Thursday’s episode of Bob, Dave and Moore in this podcast.

More Seahawks coverage

Rost: 3 concerns about Seahawks despite 5-1 start
Groz: Why fans will appreciate Earl Thomas in his return
• Heaps: The value of Tyler Lockett when Russell Wilson scrambles
Wyman looks at a pair of big plays the Seahawks’ defense gave up
• Clayton: If Hawks are going to win division, pass rush must get going
• Moore: Ravens safety Earl Thomas set for Seattle return

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