The Broncos needed someone to step up as an edge rusher when Von Miller was lost for the year to a late-summer ankle injury and Malik Reed wound up answering the call.
Reed came off the bench to start the season, but he moved into the starting lineup in Week 4 and remained there the rest of the way. He led the team with eight sacks and also recorded 53 tackles, 17 quarterback hits, and a forced fumble.
The performance has Reed, who made the Broncos after going undrafted in 2019, setting a higher bar for himself for the 2021 season.
“You said 8 sacks this year? This year it would be great to set that bar to double-digits, more tackles, more TFL’s, quarterback hits, just keep setting that bar high and watch God work because without him none of this would be possible, and I wouldn’t be in this position and I know he has me here for a purpose and for a reason,” Reed said, via Cody Roark of KUSA. “You have to believe in yourself and believe in what you can do out there and that you’re able to accomplish those goals.”
The Broncos have until March 16 to exercise their option on Miller’s contract for the 2021 season. Doing so would guarantee $7 million of his $17.5 million base salary as he comes off the injury. He’s also been the subject of a criminal investigation for undisclosed reasons, so the Broncos may weigh the prospect of moving on with Reed and Bradley Chubb as their holdovers on the edge.