The message Ed Reed is trying to spread is simple, and the reason he’s with the Jets now is as plain as the shirt on his back.
According to A.J. Perez of the Newark Star-Ledger, Reed and Jets cornerback Antonio Cromartie were wearing black T-shirts Thursday with a picture of a football and the message: “Wanted: In the air or on the ground. $20,000.”
The Jets are in the bottom five in the league in both interceptions (28th) and fumble recoveries (30th). Their seven takeaways are tied for last in the league with the Chargers.
Reed was brought in with hopes of fixing those numbers, which are out of whack with what has otherwise been a good defense this year.
The 35-year-old safety has 61 career interceptions, along with 13 fumble recoveries and 11 forced fumbles (though none this year with the Texans or Jets).
But he wanted to make it clear he wasn’t setting up a bounty system for turnovers.
“No, I’m not offering 20 grand for a turnover,” Reed said. “It’s a shirt.”
Maybe so, but the message to his new teammates is clear.