- The Washington Times
Monday, August 3, 2020

Former Washington tight end Jordan Reed agreed to terms with the San Francisco 49ers on a one-year deal, according to a new report. 

Reed will reunite with coach Kyle Shanahan, who served as the tight end’s offensive coordinator his rookie season in 2013. The deal will reportedly contain heavy incentives for the 30-year-old. 

ESPN first reported the agreement.

Reed did not play last season after suffering a concussion during a preseason game against the Atlanta Falcons in August 2019. It was his seventh documented head injury, dating back to college. In February, Washington released Reed to save $8.5 million toward the salary cap. 

In addition to his concussion history, Reed has had a slew of injuries throughout his eight-year career. He has never played a full 16-game season, dealing with chest, shoulder and foot injuries. 

But when healthy, Reed was a game-changer for Washington’s offense. The 6-foot-2 athletic, pass-catching tight end was a go-to option under former coach Jay Gruden’s scheme, and Washington often exploited mismatches whenever Reed was on the field.

Reed’s most productive season came in 2015, when he hauled in 87 catches for 952 yards and 11 touchdowns. The year coincided with the last season Washington made the playoffs. Reed was also named to the Pro Bowl in 2016 following a campaign in which he caught 66 passes for 688 yards and six touchdowns.

After the 2016 season, Washington signed him to a five-year, $48 million extension — making Reed the highest-paid tight end in football. But Reed’s production fell afterward, appearing in just 13 games across three seasons and totaling 769 yards.  

After being released, Reed was linked to various teams. He visited the Seattle Seahawks, though ultimately left unsigned. And earlier Monday, before reaching an agreement with San Francisco, there was a report that the Baltimore Ravens were “looking at” Reed. 

Reed is the second prominent Washington alum to join the 49ers this offseason. In April, the team traded left tackle Trent Williams to San Francisco after a months-long dispute. The 49ers are coming off a 13-3 season in which they fell short to the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl 54.

Reed will be paired with All-Pro tight end George Kittle, who has had two consecutive 1,000-yard seasons in Shanahan’s offense. Though Reed likely won’t be the primary option, Shanahan features multiple tight end looks and relies on them heavily. 

Washington replaced Reed by signing two veterans in Richard Rodgers and Logan Thomas. Both players have NFL experience, though have lacked production in recent years. Thomas is coming off a 16-catch, 173-yard season with the Detroit Lions, while Rodgers appeared in only one game for the Philadelphia Eagles last season.

Thomas, too, was placed on the NFL’s reserve/COVID-19 list last week, meaning he either has coronavirus or was exposed to someone who had it. 

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