Veteran defender Brooks Reed is the second ex-Atlanta Falcon to join the Arizona Cardinals organization in the past few days
The Arizona Cardinals have had a busy couple of days. This past Thursday, the club signed former Atlanta Falcon Robert Alford to remedy the squad’s number-two cornerback dilemma. Just two days after that Cards’ management struck again, adding a former teammate of the talented cover guy.
Brooks Reed became the second ex-Falcon defender to join new coordinator Vance Joseph‘s defense this past week. The Cardinals handed the 31-year old a one-year, $2 million deal, just 48 hours after he was released by Atlanta. It’s a homecoming for Reed, who attended high school in Tucson, and was also a star performer at the University of Arizona.
The former Arizona Wildcat, who played defensive end for the Falcons, will more than likely line up opposite Chandler Jones at the outside linebacker spot. There’s a possibility that the 6’3, 254 pounder may have been signed as an insurance policy. Incumbent starter Markus Golden is expected to test the free agent market after spending the last four years in the desert.
It’s worth noting that Reed is coming off of one of the least productive campaigns of his eight-year NFL career. The former Houston Texan tallied just 24 tackles and one quarterback sack in 16 appearances (eight starts) for Atlanta last season. The Cards are obviously banking on a bounce-back performance from Reed in 2019.
The former second-round pick was drafted 42nd-overall by the Texans in 2011. Reed spent four years in Houston before leaving as a free agent in 2015. In March of that year, the Falcons lured him away, inking Reed to a five-year, $22 million contract.
Reed has racked up 270 tackles during his eight seasons in the league. His resume also includes 21.5 sacks, 54 quarterback hits and 35 tackles for loss. Reed has appeared in 120 games as a professional, and has 86 starts under his belt.
Many experts are predicting that Arizona will draft edge rusher Nick Bosa with the first-overall pick of this April’s draft. Like Reed, the Ohio State Buckeye has played defensive end, but would line up at linebacker in the Cardinals’ scheme. Reed would most likely be relegated to backup duty if Bosa was added to the nest.
At the very least, Reed will provide some quality depth at the linebacker position. Kudos to the Cards’ front office for the aggressiveness they’ve shown so far this offseason. And you can bet that the signings of Alford and Reed are just the beginning.