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Ed Reed Critical of Joe Flacco, Ravens Offense Against Texans

This could go one of either two ways.  The positive outcome for Ravens fans would be if Ed Reed’s criticism of Joe Flacco and the Ravens’ offense on Monday plays the role of motivator.  The negative: well, you know — Flacco loses confidence, gets rattled easier, and can’t find a way to put points on the board in New England.

“They had a lot of guys in the box on (Flacco) and they were giving it to him,” Reed said when discussing Baltimore’s win over the Texans in an interview on SiriusXM. “I think a couple of times he needed to get rid of the ball. It just didn’t look like he had a hold on the offense. I don’t know how much of (that was) the play calling … but it just didn’t look like he had a hold on the offense, you know, of times past.

“He can’t play like that. One specific play that sticks out to me was when Ray Rice came out and got pushed out of the backfield and (Flacco) still threw him the ball and he had Torrey Smith on the outside. I can say that sitting on the sideline or sitting in the stands. You don’t know what someone else is seeing.”

That sounds like a much different opinion from the one Terrell Suggs shared with us on Tuesday. Reed is obviously a proven leader for the Ravens, so he has earned the right to say whatever he wants about the team.  He was also critical of Baltimore’s offensive line, saying they need to do a better job of protecting Flacco.

Whether Reed’s assessment is accurate or not, I can’t help but feel like Flacco has heard enough of the same criticism from the media.  As we know, he’s grown very tired of listening to that.  Hearing it from a teammate could either be the kick in the ass he needs or make matters worse on the road in the biggest game of the year.

Ed Reed Has Been Playing Hurt, Shoulder Just ‘Hanging on’

Wondering why Ed Reed hasn’t been making the kinds of plays we’re use to seeing from him? Maybe it’s because the Ravens safety has been severely bothered by a shoulder injury lately.

Reed told reporter Jamison Henley that he’s been struggling with the injury.

“I had a stinger hurt me this year so bad in my right shoulder to where now it has affected my deltoid (muscle in the shoulder) and my scapula,” Reed says. “My shoulder has just been hanging on the last couple of weeks. You could see how it has affected me for the most part. I think I’ve missed one tackle for four games straight, one in each game.”

Even if Reed takes chances in pass coverage trying to go for interceptions, he’s usually a reliable tackler. That hasn’t been the case. For instance, he missed a tackle on Bernard Scott in the season finale against the Bengals. You figure that many players are playing through injuries in the playoffs, but some are worse than others. Sounds like Reed’s is keeping him from being the Pro Bowl player he usually is.

Ed Reed Calls Hines Ward a ‘Dirty Player’

You know the old expression “you don’t know what you have until it’s gone”? The NFL lockout has reportedly ended before training camp has even begun, but that expression has fully applied to the world of sports over the past few months. Fans have been yearning for anything NFL-related like free agency and OTAs. More importantly, the lockout has robbed us of a whole mess of trash talk.

Sure, we have gotten the occasional cry-baby spazfest from guys like James Harrison, but there has been little talk to help fire us up for some real game action.  Last week, Ed Reed let a few more sparks fly within the Ravens-Steelers rivalry with his thoughts on Hines Ward.

“I love Hines as a player and I told him that,” Reed told the Baltimore Sun at his football camp. “But I told him also for a long time, ‘You’re a dirty player because I know how you play.’”

The history between Reed and Ward goes back a long time, as you probably know.  Reed is one of the game’s hardest hitters and probably doesn’t like the fact that Ward has dropped him with a block.  What Ed calls a “cheap shot,” some of us call being embarrassed that a receiver put you down.  As a receiver who isn’t afraid to throw a block, Ward is a dying breed.  Considering he is a respected veteran in the league and plays the game at full-speed, I doubt the officials will make anything of Reed saying he’s a dirty player.  Bottom line: football’s back.

Chest bump to Pro Football Talk

Ed Reed Returns to Ravens After Visiting Family, Search Called Off for Brother

Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed returned to the Ravens’ practice facility after spending some time back home in Louisiana visiting with his family, which is dealing with the disappearance of Reed’s brother Brian. Brian Reed went missing on January 7th when he reportedly jumped into the Mississippi River while fleeing police. Investigators founds Brian Reed’s shoes and jacket, but have called off the search for Reed himself.

Ed Reed stayed with his team and played in the Ravens’ 30-7 drubbing of the Kansas City Chiefs in Sunday’s Wild Card game. Reed had a solid, if not spectacular game, recording four tackles including a devastating hit on Chiefs running back Dexter McCluster. After the game, the Ravens presented Reed with a game ball for him and his family. An emotional Reed accepted the ball saying, “I know my brother, he loved football, but he wanted to beat Pittsburgh and now I want a Bowl.”

Reed is an unbelievable talent, leading the NFL with eight interceptions during the regular season, despite missing the first sex games of the year. He returned to the team after just one day home with his family, indicating he’s a teammate any player would love to have. He’s obviously committed to his teammates and the Ravens organization and wants to play well and win for his missing brother, but I don’t think anyone would have held it against him if he spent a little more time with his grieving family.

Everyone handles grief differently. Many people look for things to distract them, and preparing for a playoff game against a bitter division rival would definitely fit that bill. I’m sure Reed’s family was very supportive of his decision to return to Baltimore. I just hope Reed’s preparation for a football game doesn’t come at the expense of his family.