It didn’t take nearly as long for Jarran Reed to soak his uniform with perspiration Saturday at the Seattle Seahawks rookie minicamp practice as it did to sweat out his NFL draft fate.
But the former Alabama standout said he could not have landed in a better situation as a second-round pick with a first-round talent grade.
“It is definitely motivation,” Reed said. “Things happen. I just stay humble, stay focused — that is all I can do. I am in a great spot. I’ve got a great coach, great organization, great teammates, great facility — I can’t be mad with this.”
Reed has always been superb at one thing in football — stopping the guy who has the ball.
In his past five seasons — a senior year at Goldsboro (N.C.) High School (2011), two seasons at East Mississippi Junior College (2013-14) and the past two years at Alabama (2015-16) — he has recorded 331 tackles as a defensive tackle.
And while with the Crimson Tide, many NFL draft pundits considered him the more polished NFL-ready prospect over teammate A’Shawn Robinson, mainly because of his ability to stop the run.
So when Reed showed up on the red carpet for last week’s NFL draft at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University in Chicago, he was ready for a short night.
Just in case, he brought along two suits and another “dress casual” outfit for the weekend.
Decked out in a purple-and-gold colored suit in honor of his Omega Psi Phi college fraternity, Reed showed up backstage with his family and close friends, and waited for it all to unfold.
And he waited.
And waited more.
As the first round closed, Reed’s name was nowhere to be heard.
When he made his way back to the hotel, Reed wasn’t angry. He was more determined.
“It just made me more hungry,” Reed said. “It made me feel like I needed to go back in and improve my game.”
The next night, Reed was the last invitee still waiting backstage to be drafted.
“Turned out I needed (both suits),” Reed said.
About the time he grabbed a bag of Skittles to munch on was about the time Seattle made a trade with New England to acquire the 49th overall pick.
The Seahawks selected Reed, who charged the stage like a playful bull — and still with a bag of Skittles clutched in his right hand.
“That is the type of person I am,” said Reed, who was the eighth defensive tackle drafted. “I don’t really get down about anything. Everything happens for a reason. I just prayed to God, and felt like I was put here (in Seattle) for a reason.”
What the Seahawks have in Reed is an immediate replacement for Brandon Mebane, who signed with San Diego as a free agent after nine seasons in Seattle.
Mebane was a stalwart in the middle of the Seahawks’ defensive line. But he also turned 31 this past January.
Reed is nearly eight years younger — and at 6 foot 3, 311 pounds, he is also slightly bigger than Mebane (6-1, 310).
And last week, Reed reportedly signed a four-year deal with the Seahawks.
“It’s been all about business, just coming in, getting ready to work, getting back to work,” Reed said. “Once you get drafted, it doesn’t stop. … Your work continues to grow.”
For this weekend’s mini-camp, Reed has been parked right next to fellow rookie Quinton Jefferson, a fifth-round pick.
They are also roommates this week as well.
“We played together at the Senior Bowl, so I was already familiar with him,” Jefferson said. “We’ve spent a lot of time together since we’ve been here. He’s a good dude.
“We both have the same mindset — just want to come in and compete, play our tails off and contribute anyway we possibly can.”
As far as these first few practices, Reed said what coach Pete Carroll and his staff do is very similar to what he experienced at Alabama.
“The only difference (here) is we’ve got music on the field,” Reed said. “We ain’t got music on the field at Alabama.”
For the second consecutive day, former TCU star Trevone Boykin got the most 11-on-11 snaps of the rookie quarterbacks. Skyline High graduate Jake Heaps was No. 2, followed by Eastern Washington and Oregon product Vernon Adams, who tweaked his foot and missed a few series before returning. … Terry Poole started the live action at right tackle, but Lene Maiava took the most snaps with the No. 1 rookie unit. First-rounder Germain Ifedi continued at right guard. … Wide receivers Tyler Slavin, Antwan Goodley and Kenny Lawler, a seventh-rounder from Cal, all made great catches downfield from Boykin. Lawler made an acrobatic one-handed grab, but he also had a pass clank off his hands for an interception that was returned for a touchdown by Kyle Coleman. … Earlier Saturday on 710-AM, offensive line coach Tom Cable said Justin Britt will move to center, marking his third position with the Seahawks.