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SEATTLE — Defensive tackle Jarran Reed refused to give up the money in his contract for salary, leading to his dismissal from the Seattle Seahawks last week, a source confirmed to ESPN.
Reed, meanwhile, has signed a one-year contract with the Kansas City Chiefs. It includes $5 million guaranteed and up to $7 million total, according to NFL Network.
He is expected to make nearly $9 million with the Seahawks in 2021.
Seattle wanted Reid to agree to a so-called simple restructuring that would pay him the same amount and give the Seahawks immediate relief.
The proposed restructuring would have reduced Reed’s base salary to a veteran minimum of just under $1 million, but he would have received the rest of his compensation in the form of an $8 million signing bonus. Teams typically use this type of conversion to make room for tailback by deferring it to future years.
As Reed entered the final year of his contract, the Seahawks would have added an extra year or two to spread the marginal cost of his new signing bonus. But the artificial number of years added to the contract would automatically disappear after next season, meaning Reed would be a free agent as expected.
Reid’s agent supported the restructuring, the source said. But Reed insisted that the Seahawks had a real extension, believing he deserved it after becoming a visible part of their defense. When the Seahawks turned him down, Reed asked if they would promise him a new contract in the future, which they did not.
The Seahawks fired Reed after failing to trade him. This decision saved them nearly $9 million in cash and left them with $5 million in dead money. They needed the savings to re-contract defender Carlos Dunlap. Seattle also brought back defensive tackle Al Woods as an option to replace Reed on first downs.
Reed’s refusal to restructure meant he was already in the second week of free agency, at the end of which teams typically spend the most in the offseason.
Reed, 28, has been a full-time starter since 2017, a year after Seattle selected him in the second round out of Alabama. Known primarily as a runner in his first two seasons, he recorded 10.5 sacks in 2018. He began the 2019 season with a six-game suspension for an NFL personal conduct violation and finished the year with two sacks in 10 games.
In March, the Seahawks gave Reed a two-year, $23 million contract, hoping he could regain his 2018 form. In 16 games, he had something like 6.5 sacks, but he would have accounted for nearly $14 million on the cap, a number the Seahawks sought to reduce with a shakeup.
In Kansas City, Reed will be reunited with former Seahawks teammate Frank Clark. Reed had a career-high 10.5 sacks in 2018, and he and Clark played together on Seattle’s defensive line last season.
NFL Network first reported that Reed is waiving a contract restructuring.