Mr. Irrelevant XLI Kalan Reed’s dream comes true
When Kalan Reed was a kid, he lived in Nashville, Tenn., where his favorite NFL team became the Tennessee Titans and he never stopped loving them.
Now, as a 22-year-old, he loves them even more. The Titans selected Reed with the final pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, No. 253, making him Mr. Irrelevant XLI.
“I couldn’t be more excited,” said Reed, a 5-foot-11, 198-pound corner back who ran the 40-yard dash in 4.38 seconds in a recent pro day performance. “That’s been my favorite team ever since I was little. It’s a dream come true. I grew up in Birmingham, Ala., but when I was 3-5 I was in Nashville. I have a lot of family there. They were going crazy.”
Reed was a spectacular athlete while at Briarwood Christian High School in Alabama, helping his Lions reach the state playoffs in his final three years of high school, including the state championship as a junior. He also competed in basketball and track and field, in which he won the state championship in the 110-meter hurdles and long jump as a senior.
He then took his athleticism to Southern Miss, where he progressed each year for the Golden Eagles. As a senior he earned first-team All-Conference USA honors. He set a new regular season record at Southern Miss with 19 passes broken up, including four interceptions - two of which he returned for touchdowns.
A lot of those pass breakups caused people to call Reed by his nickname, “Roo.”
“They called me Roo because of my jumping,” he said. “I jumped 41-1/2 inches in the vertical.”
Reed just might actually get to meet the other Roo and many more characters while at Disneyland as part of Irrelevant Week in Orange County and Southern California, set for June 3-5.
Irrelevant Week, and Mr. Irrelevant – celebrating the underdog – was created by NFL legend Paul Salata, a Newport Beach resident.
Reed will be roasted and toasted during the annual Lowsman Banquet, where he’ll receive the Lowsman Trophy, which has the figurine fumbling a football. He’ll also take on the sites and many outdoor activities in Newport Beach. In addition, he’ll be featured during a parade and celebration on Balboa Island.
With the Tennessee Titans, he can receive some helpful Mr. Irrelevant advice, as Titans kicker Ryan Succop is a former Mr. Irrelevant, and one of the best in a rich history.
Reed has joined the Mr. Irrelevant fraternity and wants to be among the greatest, too.
“I just want to be the best player I can be and help the team in any way I can make them better,” he said.
CONTACT: Melanie Fitch