Player Profile Series: LB Taylor Reed

With fall camp nearing, the PS staff will profile all 22 projected starters throughout July. Today we take a look at senior linebacker Taylor Reed.

Taylor Reed

Position: Inside Linebacker

Size: 6-0, 240

High School: Beaumont West Brook (TX)

Classification: Senior

2011 Review: They don't call Reed ‘tank' for nothing. The SMU linebacker was absolutely dominant last season as he punished opposing ball carriers and notched tackle after tackle. You can bet everyone felt like they had just been steamrolled after the tank laid the wood.

Reed led the team in tackles with 101 including 9.5 for loss and also recorded four sacks. His numbers earned him a spot on the All-Conference USA second team and solidified his status as one of SMU's top defensive players.

Reed plays with unparalleled emotion and heart but sometimes he lets his temper get the best of him, as was the case against Southern Miss. He was suspended for unruly actions, which forced him to sit out against Tulsa.

The Mustangs surely missed him as they got romped 38-7. Point blank, Reed was an essential part of the defense last season and was a huge reason why the unit was able to make a significant jump in defensive statistical rankings.

2011 Grade: A-

2012 Outlook: Reed was again suspended from spring practices, this time to attend to off the field issues. When asking young players whom they see as the leader of the defense, almost all of them will immediately say T-Reed so it's surprising this is a reoccurring theme.

However, Reed appears to have moved on from both situations. Don't expect him to miss anytime this year because as a senior, it'll be his job to not only make plays on the field but also keep everybody in line including himself.

There is no doubt Reed is a tremendous talent, and he will once again be one of defensive coordinator Tom Mason's most dynamic run stoppers. Earlier this month, he was named to the Lombardi Award watch list, which honors the best college lineman or linebacker in the nation.

This offseason, Reed has been putting in work in the weight room and recently recorded a personal best 465-pound bench press. His strength combined with his experience will surely make him the top inside linebacker in the conference.

Pony Stampede Top Stories