Ed Reed on not starting for the Texans
Ed Reed was brought to Houston to be a difference maker, to be the ballhawking safety the team thought they so desperately needed, the missing link to a Super Bowl season.
Now, he’s not even starting.
Against the Colts, Reed was relegated to playing in the team’s dime package and played just 32 snaps. In his place, Shiloh Keo played in the base package with rookie D.J. Swearinger.
“That’s like anything. I’m human," Reed said. "I have trial and tribulations like anybody else. Did I accept it well? Naw, I didn’t because I look at the tape as well. I’m grading, not just myself, but us a whole. At the same time, like I said, I understand this game. I understand where I’m at. I understand communication with my coach and what he’s trying to accomplish, what we’re trying to accomplish. At the end of the day, that’s for the betterment of the team. I also know that I didn’t have the reps to show that I can still do what I do even if I’m on the field.”
The coaches told Reed what his role would be heading into the Indianapolis game so not starting wasn’t a surprise, but Reed, 35, still thinks he can play at a high level.
The team has lost all six games in which he has played. Reed missed the first two games of the season after offseason hip surgery. He said those missed reps hurt. And quarterbacks aren’t throwing his way either; he has been targeted just three times in his time with the Texans.
“I see the blogs, the stuff that is being written and all of that, ‘Ed is old. He’s not doing this. He’s only had one pass defended,’” Reed said. “I had no pass defended at the time until last week. Let’s look at the tape. I’ll look at the tape with anybody who wants to look at it with me. Played six games, missed three-and-a-half, four tackles, mental error here and there, nothing major. But they haven’t thrown my way, not anywhere close. I think the ball has come close to me twice.
“Am I not doing my job or am I not being tested? If you want to watch the tape and you want to grade me, however you want to look at it, so be it. I know when I’m on the football field, outside of two or three tackles I’ve missed, that you can point out none of them have been touchdowns. I’ve missed tackles before in my past, so it’s nothing to worry about. I know what I can do. At the same time, team player, role player, Robert Horry, Bryon Russell, some of the best sixth-men to ever play.”
Reed did say he was OK with his new role but admitted there was some frustration when he found out he was no longer the starter.
According to Reed, the last game he didn’t start when he was healthy came in his sophomore season at Miami against East Carolina. The No. 9-ranked Hurricanes lost that game 27-23 to the unranked Pirates on Sept. 25. Over 14 years and nine Pro Bowl appearances later, his starting-when-healthy streak came to a close on Sunday.
Reed isn’t sure what his role will be moving forward with the club but is prepared for whatever they want him to do.
“It is what it is,” Reed said. “Coach made the decision. We talked about it. As a competitor, the player that I am, yeah, that was some frustration for there a second. At the same time, there’s an understanding where I’m at and what are we trying to accomplish? At the end of the day, it’s a team sport. I’m the ultimate team player. If that’s what we’re to do to win, so as long as we’re winning, I honestly don’t care.”