Jets’ Defensive Star Makes Bold Statement On Contract Extension

DJ Reed, New York Jets
Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

When you think of the New York Jets‘ secondary, the first player that will come to mind is Sauce Gardner, and understandably so. After all, Gardner may very well be the best cornerback in football.

However, the cornerback who plays opposite of Gardner is pretty terrific, as well. That player is D.J. Reed.

Reed is preparing to enter his third season with the Jets after signing with the club as a free agent back in 2022. The problem is, he is also going into the final year of his deal.

The 27-year-old was asked about his contract status on Wednesday, but Reed did not provide much of a concrete answer, saying that “the ball is in [the Jets’] court,” via Connor Hughes of SNY.

Reed added that he loves New York, but that he would also welcome free agency next March if that ends up being the scenario.

He is slated to earn $10.5 million in base salary this coming season.

D.J. Reed Has Broken Out With the Jets

Reed, who played his collegiate football at Kansas State, was originally selected by the San Francisco 49ers in the fifth round of the 2018 NFL Draft.

He spent the first couple of years of his career with the 49ers as a backup before being waived in August 2020. He then signed with the Seattle Seahawks, where he got a chance to start.

Injuries limited Reed to just 10 games in his debut campaign with the Seahawks, but he started eight of them and registered 62 tackles, a pair of interceptions, two fumble recoveries and seven passes defended.

The following year, Reed made 14 starts, finishing with 78 tackles, two picks, a fumble recovery and 10 passes defended.

That ensuing offseason, the Bakersfield, Ca. native signed with the Jets, and in his first season in the Big Apple, he started every game and rattled off 80 stops, an interception, a forced fumble and 12 passes defended. He went on to play in 15 games and record 76 tackles, a pick, an interception and nine passes defended in 2023.

Reed isn’t quite Gardner, but he is a very good cornerback, and the two of them together comprise one of the best cornerback duos in the NFL.

The Jets boasted the third-ranked defense in the league last year, and their impressive secondary was a significant reason why.

We’ll see if New York tries to hammer out an extension with Reed in the coming weeks.

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