Nov 14, 2013; Florham Park, NJ, USA; New York Jets safety Ed Reed addresses the media at his locker at the Jets training facility. Mandatory Credit: William Perlman/THE STAR-LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports
After being signed by the New York Jets on Thursday afternoon, S Ed Reed will play his first game in green and white on Sunday against the Buffalo Bills. Ed Reed, 35 years old, was just recently cut by the Houston Texans after being benched for his poor performance thus far. When Rex Ryan heard that Ed Reed was cut, he immediately contacted Jets’ GM John Idzik to see if signing him was a possibility. Not only did Ryan believe that Reed could help the suffering secondary, but he was also Reed’s defensive coordinator in Baltimore for seven years and has called Reed “the best safety that’s ever played. Although Reed is old and has been coping with some offseason injuries, the Jets believe he can make an impact on this team.
However, one has to wonder if he’ll really make an impact on the field for Gang Green. Rex Ryan and the Jets’ coaching staff has been praising safety Antonio Allen’s play all year, and will likely not wish to bench him. Ryan has also been pleased with Dawan Landry’s play so far as well, and it is improbable that Ryan would bench him. So, that would leave Ed Reed to only come in as a situational player, much like Jaiquawn Jarrett has done for the first half of the season. Because of this, Reed will likely not see a lot of playing time in Sunday’s performance and maybe even for the rest of the season. Reed has accumulated just 16 tackles in 6 starts, and has yet to force a fumble, recover a fumble, make an interception, defend a pass, or get a sack all season. There is no doubt that Reed is no longer the dominant player he used to be, and he may not even be good enough to start for any team at this point in his career.
Fortunately, for what Ed Reed is incapable of doing on the field he can make up for it off the field. Ed Reed brings experience and leadership to that secondary that no one else can do. Before Reed’s arrival, the only leader and role model on the Jets’ secondary was CB Antonio Cromartie, and he is by no means a good example for the young players like Dee Milliner, Antonio Allen, and Darrin Walls. For example, not only does Cromartie currently has 10 kids with 8 different mothers, but he also has been charged with assault with a deadly weapon twice in his NFL career. Although Cromartie has tried to become a veteran mentor for the young players, he is nothing compared to Ed Reed who is known for his leadership.
Ed Reed is a 9-time Pro Bowler and 1-time Super Bowl Champion, and considering the Jets currently have only two players who have started for Super Bowl winning teams (Santonio Holmes and Willie Colon), adding another to the list will definitely help guide them through the postseason if they make it their. Speaking of the postseason, the signing of Ed Reed further proves that the Jets are expecting to make a postseason push. There is no doubt that the Jets mean business this year, and with Tennessee, Miami, and San Diego both losing their most recent games, the Jets have further increased their lead on the wildcard spot. Although Ed Reed might not directly impact the rest of the season on the field, his off the field demeanor and presence will definitely help the Jets in the long run.