Giants Predicted to Land NFL’s Fourth-Leading Sack Artist

Getty Impending free agent LB Haason Reddick.

When free agency kicks off next Wednesday, Haason Reddick will be free to sign anywhere he so pleases – and you could be certain he’ll garner his fair share of interest. The Arizona Cardinals forwent the opportunity to franchise tag their former first-round pick earlier this week, allowing the 26-year-old to hit the open market fresh off a career season in which he amassed 12.5 sacks, tied for the fourth-most in the NFL.

The recent signing of J.J. Watt and the desire to retain unheralded star Chandler Jones may make a reunion with Reddick difficult to come by for the Cardinals. Yet, that’s not to say that the linebacker won’t be rewarded for his breakout campaign.

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Giants Predicted to Sign LB Haason Reddick

The Athletic’s Sheil Kapadia believes that Reddick’s hometown New York Football Giants will be waiting with a checkbook in hand to secure his services upon free agency officially opening up on March 17th.

“The Giants finished 32nd in ESPN’s pass rush win rate metric last season and are in dire need of pass rush. New York really helped boost Reddick’s stock last season — he had five sacks in a Week 13 game against them. Reddick finished the year with 12.5 sacks,” Kapadia said of the pass-rusher, who ranks within The Athletic’s top-50 unrestricted free agents. Will that be enough to earn him a big long-term contract? He had just 7.5 sacks in his first three seasons. Reddick’s versatility would fit well in defensive coordinator Patrick Graham’s system, making this a nice fit for both sides.

The good news for Reddick, while he may potentially be moving across the country, chances are he won’t have to reintroduce himself to Giants quarterback Daniel Jones.

Is Reddick a One-Year/One-Game Wonder?

While Markus Golden’s return to East Rutherford was the trending topic heading into Week 14’s Cardinals-Giants matchup, it was Golden’s bookend, Reddick, who quickly stole the show. The Camden, NJ native dominated offensive tackles Andrew Thomas, Matt Peart and Cameron Fleming en route to a franchise-record 5.0 sacks.

While his performance was astonishing, it did come on the heels of a five-game sack drought for Reddick. It also greatly helped inflate his overall statistical output on the season. With that said, Reddick was much more than just a one-game wonder in 2020.

After years of attempting to deploy the undersized defender as a hybrid/off-ball linebacker, injuries to Cardinals pass-rushers left the team with no choice but to let Reddick roam free off the edge. Reddick responded with his best season to date, collecting 12.5 sacks and proving to be a constant disturbance in opposing backfields, with 33 tackles for loss and 32 quarterback hits.

Yes, Reddick did struggle early in his career. And yes, 62.5% of his career sack output did occur just this past season. Yet, part of Reddick’s overall lack of career production does fall on Arizona’s inability to properly utilize the edge defender.

However, his one-year boost in numbers could lead potential suitors to be wary of handing a long-term deal to Reddick. In return, Pro Football Focus predicts Reddick will ink an extremely team-friendly, one-year, $8 million prove-it deal this offseason, which would come in clutch for a Giants team low on funds.

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