One of the most shrewd moves the Seattle Seahawks made last season was grabbing cornerback D.J. Reed off injury waivers from the San Francisco 49ers during the preseason.
The Seahawks are hoping another former 49ers cornerbacks will be a similar boost to their secondary this season.
Seattle signed Ahkello Witherspoon to a one-year deal this offseason as part of the plan to replace Shaquill Griffin, who left to sign with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Witherspoon has had highs and lows during his tenure in San Francisco. Reed played alongside Witherspoon for two seasons before he was claimed off waivers by Seattle last year. Reed believes the Seahawks are getting a very good option in Witherspoon.
“You’re getting a good football player,” Reed said, in a podcast with Michael-Shawn Dugar and Christopher Kidd of TheAthletic.com. “First of all, he’s all of 6-3. It’s not just on paper. If you see him, he’s a big dude. He’s all of 6-3. One thing I love about him is his technique. His re-step, he probably has one of the best, if not the best, re-step in the league. If you don’t know what re-step is, it’s just a technique at the line where you just side-step when you’re in press [coverage]. He does a good job getting his hands on receivers. He gives a lot of good receivers problems.”
Witherspoon has played in 47 games for the 49ers with 33 starts in four seasons after being drafted in the third round out of the University of Colorado in 2017. Witherspoon has shown flashes of really strong play while also having dips in performance that led to getting benched at times.
Reed was recovering from a torn pectoral when he was released by the 49ers. If he hadn’t been claimed, he would have reverted to San Francisco’s injured list and missed all of last season. Instead, the Seahawks grabbed him and he was healthy by midseason, earning the starting job on the right side opposite Griffin.
Witherspoon will now have the chance as well to perform for the rival Seahawks after being let go by the 49ers.
“He’s a really good cornerback,” Reed said.