RENTON, Wash. – Jarran Reed practiced. Bobby Wagner watched.
Neither was particularly pleased with his situation as the Seattle Seahawks started training camp Thursday.
Reed took part in practice just a few days after learning he would miss the first six games of the season. He was suspended by the NFL under the personal conduct policy for an incident more than two years ago in which police were called but he was not arrested or charged.
Meanwhile, Wagner was a spectator while waiting to see if he comes to an agreement on a contract extension. Wearing a blue sweat shirt turned inside out and no jersey, Wagner chatted with teammates and threw a ball around, but wasn’t about to do more until there is certainty about his future.
Wagner also attended the offseason program but didn’t participate then, either.
“We’ve been working with Bobby for some time. There has been a lot of conversations, a lot of stuff going on and really at this time he’s got an issue getting out on the practice field at this time,” coach Pete Carroll said. “I did not talk to him about today. We will visit on that. We’re working with him to hopefully make a really good decision, both ends of it. We love him, he’s a great player, great guy in the program and we respect the heck out of him.”
Wagner’s contract dispute has been ongoing, so the fact he didn’t practice wasn’t a surprise.
But the first day of camp came just 72 hours after Reed was suspended. While he can participate in training camp and the preseason, Reed will be gone once Week 1 comes around and he won’t return until the middle of October. It’s a big blow for Seattle, and while Reed said he respects the league’s decision, he doesn’t agree with it.
“I’m very saddened to the news I would be suspended six games,” Reed said. “Of course I disagreed with the decision based on the facts. I’ve grown over the years. I’ve had to learn to grow, to mature as a leader, as a person that has good character and for sure is going to play hard and do everything I can for my teammates. The only thing we can do is move forward. I respect the NFL’s decision. We just move forward and continue to do better.”
Reed declined to elaborate on the reason for the suspension. A report from the Bellevue Police Department from 2017 recommended fourth-degree assault charges in an alleged domestic-violence incident, but prosecutors declined to charge Reed. The city of Bellevue released a statement to The Seattle Times saying it believed there was insufficient evidence to prosecute.
Carroll said so much time had passed since the team first learned of the incident to the punishment being handed down that he was unsure if Reed would face any discipline.
“Jarran has been working at this for some time now. I appreciate the growth and maturity and transparency he’s brought forth in showing us that he does understand this is a very serious issue,” Carroll said. “I think our guys in general have shown that growth and maturity. You can just feel he’s learned from this and is moving ahead.”
Seattle signed veteran Earl Mitchell to help make up for the loss of Reed, who is coming off the best season of his career with 10 1/2 sacks last year and is entering the final season of his rookie contract.
But Reed’s contract situation is secondary to Wagner’s at this point. The All-Pro middle linebacker would seem to be in line for a huge payday, but there has been no agreement. Wagner is serving as his own representative in the negotiations and fellow linebacker K.J. Wright said he believes the sides are getting closer to a deal.
“I believe something will happen and I’m pretty positive. The organization knows what he means to us and like I said back in OTAs, it’s a no-brainer to get it done,” Wright said.
DE Ezekiel Ansah started training camp on the active roster despite his continuing efforts to recover from offseason shoulder surgery. Carroll said Ansah would be eased into camp. Carroll said the same approach would be used with TE Will Dissly (knee) who is ahead of schedule in his recovery from a torn patellar tendon. … Safety Marquise Blair and linebacker Ben Burr-Kirven (University of Washington), both rookies were activated off the PUP list and can begin practicing Friday. … Rookie OL Phil Haynes will be out at least another week after undergoing sports hernia surgery.
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