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ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — No one has been better at getting after the quarterback the past two weeks in the NFL than Malik Reed: not the league’s leading sacker Myles Garrett, Aaron Donald, Khalil Mack or even the red-hot Bradley Chubb.
Reed, along with Green Bay’s Za’Darius Smith, are tied for the most sacks in the league over the past two weeks with four.
“Having him come on like this is special because you saw it brewing throughout last preseason, throughout last season and now for it to come to fruition now, it’s amazing,” Bradley Chubb, who has 4.5 sacks over the past three games, said on Tuesday about Reed.
In his second start of the season in Week 6, the 6-foot-2, 235-pound outside linebacker racked up two sacks on the 6-foot-5, 245-pound Cam Newton.
If that wasn’t impressive enough, Reed did it again — against an even tougher quarterback to sack. Against the Kansas City Chiefs the following week, Reed took down Patrick Mahomes twice.
“I texted him right after the game, ‘You’re a true pro, man. You do everything right. You do everything that the coaches ask you to do. You don’t say anything that you don’t do,'” Chubb revealed.
There’s nothing fluky about Reed’s seemingly overnight success.
“Malik is one of those guys that I look up to, man,” Chubb, one of the Broncos’ best players, said about Reed. “He’s in the same room as me. He’s writing everything down. He’s doing everything. I look over there—it makes me want to get on my game a little bit more.”
This is, of course, impressive praise for any player to give a teammate. But this isn’t the usual teammate praise.
This is the former No. 5 overall pick looking up to the undrafted player. This is the third-year pass rusher looking up to the second-year pass rusher. This is the older Bradley Chubb looking up to the younger Malik Reed. This is one of the most promising young pass rushers in the league looking up to a player who not many people outside of Colorado know. This is different.
Oh, one more thing, Chubb stated Reed’s potential is, “Through the roof, man. Through the roof.”
And this isn’t even the first time a top-five pick has praised the undrafted rookie. Before Reed even played in a single game in the NFL, Von Miller said the team calls Malik “the dream killer.”
“He’s killing quarterback’s dream every single day,” the future Hall of Famer said on Aug. 22, 2019. “He’s a great guy. He’s humble. He just wants to play football. He just wants to go out there and make plays. I’m a fan. I’m a fan of Malik. I want to see him do great.
“He kind of reminds me of Shaq [Barrett] when he came in super talented just trying to find a way to play,” Von continued. “We all saw how that turned out for Shaq. Malik, he’s a great pass rusher and I’m excited for him. I’m excited to see his growth.”
It took 20 games for Shaq Barrett to record his sixth-career sack. It only took Reed one more game to do the same. In his first season as a full-time starter in 2019, Barrett led the NFL in sacks with 19.5. Not a bad comp for Reed to draw.
It hasn’t been too shabby of a week for Malik Reed on a personal level. The cherry on top of his second-straight two-sack performance was one of the Broncos’ leaders admitting he looks up to him.