It seems unlikely that the Baltimore Ravens will be able to, or even want (at least not too badly) to re-sign Ed Reed, especially with other players they need to give deals to, who have a long future ahead of them than Reed. Still, there’s plenty of interest and money out there for the future hall of fame safety, most likely with the New England Patriots or the Indianapolis Colts.

What happens next? The Ravens are probably going to let Reed test free agency, like they did with Ray Lewis in 2009. Three weeks later Lewis returned unsatisfied with the market, and signed once against to remain in Baltimore, the only team he ended up playing for in his career. Reed has the same intentions, but he knows the NFL is a business, and teams rarely make emotional decisions.

I am a Raven, plan on being a Raven. I couldn’t see myself anywhere else. But if it happens, I am a football player. I can adapt to any situation.

Reed has expressed interest in playing for Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots, which might not sound too awesome for Ravens fans, especially with the intense rivalry brewing between the teams, but the Patriots are known to taking chances on veterans and squeezing the most out of them before they’re truly finished. The Indianapolis Colts, with over $40 million in cap space, are also interested in the player, and have enough money to throw at him, luring him away from the Ravens and the Pats.

Is it just a question of money for Reed? The Ravens will probably make some sort of offer for Reed, but can’t invest a big signing bonus in a player who isn’t a consistent playmaker like in the past; has problem with his tackling and is contemplating retirement every offseason because of nerve impingement in his neck. The biggest reason Reed doesn’t stay with the Ravens is because they have bigger needs to address  like at inside linebacker.

Ed Reed is a leader, with some saying he has been more influential than Ray Lewis over the last few years, and his value probably comes in more than just the numbers, interceptions and tackles he gets on the field. Still, Reed wants to get paid, probably a little overpaid. The Ravens can’t afford to give him that. The Patriots? Maybe, but they also manage to get discounts for their signings. The Colts can afford pretty much everything in this offseason.

Image: Source