Philadelphia Eagles outside linebacker Haason Reddick proved he embodies the term "game-wrecker" when he knocked Brock Purdy from the NFC Championship Game last January. The hit derailed the San Francisco 49ers' Super Bowl hopes in the process, but the Eagles' star pass-rusher has sights set much higher in 2023 and beyond.
"Greatness," Reddick told reporters following the Eagles' August 1 training camp practice. "You're playing a sport like this, what are you playing for? Some people are playing for a paycheck. Me? I come out here every day and I go hard and I work. Why? Because I want to be great. I want to be in the Hall of Fame. I want to be a decorated player. So I come out, I give my all and I work.
"Nothing else motivates me other than being the best player I can be. Because when it's all said and done, when you say Haason Reddick's name, it should be about, 'How did he turn his career around? How did he become a legend at what he does?'"
After the most prolific and disruptive season of his career, Reddick enters 2023 on the verge of a new contract while aiming to solidify his legacy as one of the game's most dominant edge rushers, on a defense that's loaded with talent. But, what makes Reddick elite? What kind of payday might the Camden native be looking at in the months ahead?
FanBuzz spoke to rival players, agents, and executives across the league to get a sense of Reddick's value and what's on the line this upcoming season.
"Haason Reddick is a proven top pass rusher with three straight double digit sack seasons," former NFL Executive of The Year Jeff Diamond told FanBuzz. "He's durable and at 29 should have several more good years. Plus he causes turnovers which is big—5 forced fumbles last season."
Reddick emboldened his reputation as one of the premier pass-rushers across the sport in 2022, when he produced a career-high 16.0 regular-season sacks, 68 quarterback pressures, and forced six fumbles.
Perhaps the greatest form of respect is when praise comes from a storied rival, and to say Reddick left an impression on New York Giants right tackle Evan Neal during their first two matchups would be an understatement.
"The NFC East has a lot of great pass-rushers," Neal told FanBuzz during a wide-ranging conversation. "But, the two that are the best are Haason Reddick and DeMarcus Lawrence.
"The thing about Haason is, he's extremely quick. He's slippery. He's not the biggest guy, but he's a speed rusher. He works at his traits really well. He's great with his hands, he's explosive, but the main thing that separates him is his motor. He plays until the echo of the whistle, for sure."
A Pivotal Season for Haason Reddick
Beyond leaving a mark on opposing tackles lined across from him, and striking fear into quarterbacks in his crosshairs, Reddick is already part of Eagles history.
Last season, Reddick broke the franchise record for postseason sacks, with 3.5, as an instrumental cog in Philly's run to Super Bowl LVII.
Reddick, 29, is also entering the second year of his current three-year deal worth $45 million, signed as a free agent last spring prior to his gangbusters breakout 22 campaign.
Multiple league insiders suggest after his performance last season, Reddick is severely underpaid.
"If he were my client," a prominent agent familiar with the edge rusher market told FanBuzz, on the condition of anonymity to speak freely. "The conversation starts at three years and $60 million. But, after the year he just had, I'd shoot for more."
The agent isn't alone in his assessment.
"I'd say his value is more at Bradley Chubb, Maxx Crosby, Khalil Mack level," Diamond suggests. "So, somewhere in the neighborhood of $22-24 milllion per year."
The Eagles are notorious for getting deals done for players they believe to be part of their core prior to them reaching the final year of their contracts. For Reddick, that could come down to a fast start in 2023, proving that he can build on last season's success, and perhaps a midseason extension could be in the offing.
"Y'all see it, y'all know what's going on," Reddick told reporters, via Josh Tolentino of the Philadelphia Inquirer. "I'm just worried about being the best version of myself. And I'll let everything else sort itself out, truly . . . . I'm going to keep coming out, keep working, man.
"Those types of [contractual] things have a way of sorting themselves out. So I'm just going to continue to come out, work, prepare myself. Continue to be a better version of Haason Reddick, continue to be a great teammate, go out here, work hard for the guys — and let those things sort themselves out as they should."
If Reddick's 2023 encore is nearly as impressive as his 2022 performance, not only will the Eagles be in prime position for another run at the Lombardi, but his future should take care of itself.
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