Camp Report: Chiefs “Win for a Reason,” Says DT Jarran Reed

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. — When Jarran Reed signed as a free agent with the Chiefs during the offseason, the opportunity to play inside next to his friend Frank Clark was one reason, but it was a bigger attraction that lured him to Kansas City.

“It’s a team that’s based on winning and it’s based on hard work, and I wanted to join that,” Reed said after practice Monday. “When you’re winning like, it creates an environment that you want to be a part of.”

Now being a part of head coach Andy Reid’s Chiefs, he understands the expectations that drive his new teammates.

“They work very hard and it’s very appreciated,” Reed said. “It actually shows when game time hits. They win for a reason. When you’re actually inside, you watch, you see why they’re winning.”

Reed spent the past five seasons with Seattle, racking up 22 sacks including a career-high 10.5 in 2018. He signed a two-year extension with the Seahawks in March 2020 worth $23 million. When the Seahawks and Reed reached an impasse regarding a contract restructure this spring, the club released the 28-year-old, who five days later signed a one-year deal with the Chiefs worth $5.5 million.

Reed primarily plays as a 3-tech defensive tackle, lining up on the outside shoulder of the offensive guard and responsible for the gap between the guard and the tackle. It’s also the same position Chris Jones has played in past seasons. The Chiefs immediately discussed with the Reed the possibility of adding him as 3-tech tackle, which would allow Jones to play more outside on the edge.

“That’s something we talked about, discussing the versatility to use with Chris Jones,” Reed said. “I predominantly play 3-technique but I can also play nose, so we’ve got versatility all along the line, everybody can play every position. We’re all cross-trained.”

Jones is excited at the prospect of having Reed lined up at this old position.

“By him being who he is and having such a big presence along the line of scrimmage, his position, 3-tech, which we play the same position, it kind of freed me up to go and move to the outside and let him dominate the line of scrimmage from the inside,” Jones said.

Reed expects to start alongside Derrick Nnadi on the interior of the defensive line with Jones and Clark on the outside, but the Chiefs will utilize a rotation heavy with Tershawn Wharton as well. Reed feels himself settling in quickly with his new teammates.

“We all just help each other out, we give each other all tips and tendencies and things we can all work better on,” Reed said. “We all work collectively as a group.”

Reed laid out his goals for the 2021 season, and Chris Jones who pledged the defensive line will break sack records, “no ifs, ands or buts about it,” Reed’s goals don’t necessarily have numbers next to them.

“Just getting better in my all-around game, continue to get better, continue to learn, get ahead, get the playbook, work my butt off, earn the respect of my teammates,” Reed said.

It’s real football. You put the pads on, it’s when you let the pads do the talking. That’s the time you really get to thump, get the wrinkles out and everything gets going. It’s an exciting day.

— DT Jarran Reed on playing in pads for the first time on Tuesday.

Camp Observations

Much to the chagrin of offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy, the Chiefs offense did not put consistent behavior on tape during Monday’s practice in helmets and shells.

“Today, we didn’t have a very good day but I’ll have an opportunity to really evaluate it once we go in there and take a look at it on tape,” Bieniemy said.

Patrick Mahomes turned the ball over three times and sustained a few training camp sacks in the session. Perhaps most notable, it was three different linebackers making interceptions, including Willie Gay Jr. and Nick Bolton in a three-play sequence.

The weather couldn’t be blamed on Monday with temperatures topping out at a comfortable 73 degrees by the end of the 1-hour, 49-minute practice. Situations, however, certainly played a role with the offense working on some third-down situations and more difficult settings for the offense.

The first team period started early following the stretch period and individual drills. The offense started out fine with seven straight completions for the first-team offense before signs of trouble began. Noah Gray, who has been extraordinarily reliable early in camp, suffered the first of two drops on the day with the No. 2 offense.

After a special teams period featuring a perfect performance from Harrison Butker, including a field from 56 yards out, the offensive struggles began in seven-on-seven work. Mahomes suffered two interceptions — including the easy pick-six by Bolton — in six reps, and also easily overthrew a deep ball intended for Tyreek Hill.

The lone brought spot for the offense during seven-on-sevens came from backup quarterback Anthony Gordon connecting with receiver Daurice Fountain for a likely touchdown and Marcus Kemp making an athletic catch on a medium out throw from Chad Henne.

The defense continued making plays in the second full-team period, including a couple of likely sacks by Jones. Lucas Niang, filling in at right tackle for Mike Remmers, struggled at times Monday and briefly gave way to Andrew Wylie, who has been working primarily at right tackle with the No. 2 offense.

Mahomes and the first team did finish on a high note, however. Following an interception on the next-to-last play for the ones, Mahomes hit Hill on a perfectly timed deep out route along the right sideline.

Offensive play of the day: Perhaps it’s only fitting that on a day the offense struggled it was a defensive breakdown that led to a big offensive play. Gay and L’Jarius Sneed collided in coverage on a wheel route from Mahomes to Darrel Williams out of the backfield. Dirty Darrel finished it off for a touchdown down the sideline with no one in pursuit. Henne and Kemp deserve honorable mention for a perfectly timed deep ball over the secondary for a touchdown during the 11-on-11-period as well

Defensive play of the day: Take your pick. Gay was in the right place to intercept a Mahomes intended for Mecole Hardman during seven-on-sevens, and two players later Bolton made an athletic play to stretch out for a pick-six by jumping the route in front of Noah Gray. But today’s game ball goes to linebacker Darius Harris, who nabbed the only interception against Mahomes in 11-on-11 work, and he pulled it off in coverage versus Travis Kelce

Player of the day: In addition to his interception against Kelce, Harris took the lion’s share of snaps at Mike linebacker with the first-team, calling plays and setting the defense on a good day for that side of the ball. Many of the eyes during camp have naturally focused on Gay and Bolton but Harris has shown an ability to transition through all three linebacker positions.

Injury Report

The Chiefs got a scare when safety Juan Thornhill exited practice with a groin injury. The extent of the injury isn’t yet known but Thornhill walked back up the hill to the locker room on his own alongside offensive lineman Kyle Long (leg), who remains on the physically unable to perform list.

Wide receiver Chad Williams (groin) and tight end Evan Baylis (ankle) also left practices with injuries.

Also not practicing on Monday: right tackle Mike Remmers (back), linebacker Ben Niemann (hamstring), tight end Nick Keizer (back), running back Darwin Thompson (COVID-19 reserve list) and defensive end Malik Herring (knee)/

Linebacker Anthony Hitchens (hamstring) took part in the conditioning period but did not practice. Safety Armani Watts (foot) returned to practice from the physically unable to perform list.

Training Camp Playlist

  • “Back in Blood” — Pooh Shiesty (featuring Lil Durk0
  • “Bottom of the Map” — Jeezy
  • “Coupe” — Pop Smoke
  • “Modern Day” — Migos
  • “Honey? Money?” — Saya
  • “Might as Well” — Future
  • “Go Off” — Dave East & Harry Fraud featuring G Herbo
  • “Richer” — Rod Wave featuring Polo G
  • “Emotionally Scarred” — Lil Baby

When you’re in second grade and teacher asks what you want to do when you grow up, it’s be a Kansas City Chiefs football players. You know that’s kind of the dream up until college, then I was kind of like it doesn’t really matter where I go. Then you get that phone call, and to find out there’s an opportunity, I was super excited to come be a part of this.

–WR Darrius Shepherd, Blue Springs, Mo., native on joining Chiefs during offseason

What’s Next?

Pads, that’s what’s next. The pads come on for the first time Tuesday, which should result in a spirited workout, one-on-one matchups for offensive and defensive linemen and one-on-one coverage drills for receivers and defensive backs. Practice kicks off at 9:15 a.m.

Tuesday is the second of five straight days of practice for the Chiefs with all sessions starting at 9:15 a.m. The club’s next day off is Saturday. No rain is in the forecast for the remainder of the week in St. Joseph, but hotter temperatures are set to return on Friday.

Tickets for most training camp practices are free but fans must reserve tickets online in advance.