Ed Reed Confirms Plans To Return

The future Hall of Famer told the Ravens that he is not retiring after 11 seasons.

Posted by Garrett Downing on Friday, February 24th, 2012 at 3:21 pm | Categories: 2012 Offseason, 2012 Scouting Combine, Garrett Downing

The Ravens have one less thing to worry about this offseason.

Ed Reed is coming back.

The future Hall of Fame safety met with Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh this offseason and expressed a desire to return for his 11th year.

“He met with John and he told John that he is going to get himself prepared to come back and play in 2012,” Ravens General Manager Ozzie Newsome told reporters Friday at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis.

Reed, who will turn 34 in September, has not made any public comments since the season ended and he did not speak with reporters after the Ravens lost the AFC championship to New England.

He is signed through next season, but there was speculation that he might retire.

“Ed is so far along in his career that you got to respect what he’s done and you leave that in his hands,” Harbaugh said at the combine. “He told us right after that season that he was excited to come back next year and he’s looking forward to it.”

Reed’s decision to return allows the Ravens to maintain the core of their defense, as veteran middle linebacker Ray Lewis already announced that he will be back for this 17th season. It also prevents a significant need at safety, as Reed’s backups Tom Zbikowski and Haruki Nakamura are both unrestricted free agents this offseason.

Reed battled through neck and shoulder injuries last year, but played in all of the Ravens’ games and was selected to his eighth Pro Bowl. He recorded 52 tackles, three interceptions, one sack and one forced fumble.

“He was in great shape this year; he stayed healthy throughout the year. I think he is really excited about that,” Harbaugh said. “He played a lot better than what some people want to think. He played really well.”

He also played some of his best football in the postseason, where he totaled 10 tackles, one interception and a team-leading six pass deflections.

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