Six months after being released by Washington, Jordan Reed has found a new NFL home.
The free-agent tight end has agreed to a one-year deal with the reigning NFC champion San Francisco 49ers, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported Monday, per an informed source. 49ers GM John Lynch later announced the yet-to-be-finalized deal. The move reunites Reed with coach Kyle Shanahan, whom he played under during his rookie season when Shanahan was his offensive coordinator.
"I think everyone's aware of Jordan's ability. When he's been healthy, he's played at an extremely high level and he's been one of the best third-down tight ends, when he's been healthy," Shanahan said while addressing the media Monday afternoon. "You're not just trying to add a number, you're adding a guy who, if he's healthy, everyone's seen how he's played in this league. ...
"I know he's hungry to come in and play football. He hasn't gotten to do much of that lately. And when you have a talented guy who's hungry to play football, it works out if he can stay healthy. Jordan's had some bad luck over the years. I know he's ready to go. I hope he has some good luck here. And if he does, I think it's going to be a hell of a deal for the Niners and a really good deal for him also."
Lynch echoed those sentiments, saying, "There is some risk-reward. We got to a point where we felt the risk that we're taking on was worth it with the potential reward."
As both Lynch and Shanahan eluded to, it's been a rollercoaster of a career for the 30-year-old Reed, a former third-round pick out of Florida back in 2013. Four of his seven NFL seasons have prematurely ended by way of a trip to the injured reserve list; in 2019, Reed suffered a concussion in the third preseason game and ended up sitting out the entire year.
When healthy, Reed has often looked like a stud, utilizing his sturdy 6-foot-3 frame and reliable hands to pull off some sensational performances. His best season came in 2016 when he played in 12 games and accumulated 66 receptions for 686 yards and six touchdowns en route to earning his first Pro Bowl nod. He was also ranked No. 65 on the NFL Top 100 list following that season.
Reed's curious tale will now continue in San Fran where he joins a more than capable organization that knows how to bring the best out of their tight ends. George Kittle will obviously receive the bulk of the action but, if things check out medically, Reed's skillset and familiarity with Shanahan could lead to a career-reviving run for the oft-injured talent.