The body is done, but the mind remains. That is the first thing that came to mind when I heard the news of former Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed being benched by the Houston Texans. With his playing days nearly over, what is next for the 11-year veteran and future Hall-of-Famer?
With Dean Peas‘ substandard defensive play-calling abilities, I am certain that he will be filing for unemployment during the 2014 NFL offseason. With that said, Baltimore will need a defensive mind to come lead the squad back to the dominance of years past. There is a standard that Charm City holds their defense to, and currently being ranked 17th in the league is not meeting it. Reed’s presence back in Baltimore could return that dominance to this team.
He may have no experience with the title of defensive coordinator, but after 11 years of being one of the greatest to ever play the game and sitting behind one of the greatest defensive minds in NFL history in Ray Lewis, something had to have rubbed off. Not only that, but he has a full view of the field and can see how everyone is lining up and reacting to plays as a safety. Based off of that, I’m sure that plenty of coaching moments have come from no. 20 to his teammates.
The only difference now is he would have to do it from the sideline. So who would be his supporting cast?
Well, if I were to pull a squad together to coach the D, I would dive right back into what worked in the past by traveling northwest to the Minnesota Vikings and snatching up Mike Singletary, making him the Ravens’ linebackers coach. Additionally, I would go to Ozzie Newsome’s Alma Mater and hire Alabama’s secondary coach, Greg Brown. This would be a reunion between him and Jimmy Smith from their time at Colorado.
The final move is to find a defensive line coach. Clint Hurtt from Louisville has the second-best run-stop in college football; it is time he coached the big boys.
As long as Reed has a strong team of position coaches besides him and a scheme similar to the one ran in 2006 when Rex Ryan ran the show, then he will without a doubt succeed as a defensive coordinator in Baltimore. The only question remaining is, can he fit in again with John Harbaugh? Harbaugh purposely worked with Newsome to clear house of all of the big-mouth, rebellious individuals on his roster after the 2012 Super Bowl run.
Can Reed be humble enough to fit into the pecking order once again, or will this projected house of cards come tumbling down before even coming into fruition? Only time will tell. Stay tuned, Ravens Nation — the team has a rocky road ahead. Let’s just hope Ed Reed can be a part of it.