Reed not thinking about future in New Orleans

January 29, 2013 | WNST Staff



(on how great it is to be back home in New Orleans for a Super Bowl) “I can’t explain it. This is awesome. To come home, to be in Louisiana, in front of the home team, the home crowd, playing for the Super Bowl…I can’t really explain it. I’m really speechless. For everything that I’ve been through to get to this point, everything we’ve been through as a team to get to this point, it’s just awesome. I’m just trying to enjoy it and not hold everything in, just enjoy the moment and soak this up. I remember being here in ’97 for Media Day when the Patriots and Green Bay played, I had won a Punt, Pass & Kick, and I remember this right here, because I was at Media Day.”


(on if it’s tough to imagine what it would be like to win a Super Bowl in his home town) “Yes. You’ll have to ask that question after the game, because I’m sure the guys on San Fran are saying the same thing. They’re a great team and we’re a great team and at the end of the day, there’s only going to be one of us who is going to be crowned champion. That’s what we’re here for. That’s what we’re playing for, and that question can come a couple days from now.”


(on if he’s decided to come back and play for another season next year) “That question there was asked a couple days back, about this being my last ride. I’m not focusing on that right now, so that question is pointless to answer, really. I’m not even thinking about that.”


(on if he is content with this being a week to honor Ray Lewis and his career sendoff) “Hey, this is about Baltimore. I knew. Ray told me months ago that this was probably it. I had that focus of coming in, that hopefully we could get here, and here we are. It just so happened that Ray made that announcement so the team knows also, and here we are. Of course, we want to send him off the right way. I’m not about to say this is my last game, and everybody join in with that. Now, if that’s what it takes to get the guys pumped, though, I would say it. No, this is not about me. It’s about us, the Ravens playing against San Francisco. Yeah, it’s Ray’s last ride, but I wouldn’t be so certain about that. Ain’t no telling. He might make a comeback. He may play 10 games next year.


(on if he plans to visit his family while he’s in town) “Yeah, I’m going to go visit my family. I’m going to visit my mom tomorrow, I’ll be at the house tomorrow. Hopefully I can get some good cooking around here.”


(on what he remembers about Punt, Pass & Kick) “It was awesome. I remember everything, really. Going against Craig Nall and guys like that, guys who played in the league. I was going against quarterbacks. I was a safety/quarterback athlete. I wound up winning the event, and the winner of the event came to Media Day to see guys just interact with you guys. I was just standing around, me and my dad. I remember seeing the Superdome field, I remember seeing you guys crowd around guys like this. It was just an awesome day. I just started seeing those same visions as we started getting closer and closer to the Super Bowl. Before we played the Patriots, I started seeing those images, but I wasn’t saying anything about it. It was just like, ‘Lord, for real? Is this real?’ I knew we had to play this game, and it’s just awesome. After that, I wound up going to Disney World and competed in their Punt, Pass & Kick.”


(on if he can kick) “Yeah, I was a kicker. I taught Mike Scifres from San Diego. I taught him how to kick, ask him. That was back in high school and we didn’t have many kids to play the game.”


(on if he won the local Punt, Pass & Kick) “Yeah, I won the local one to go to the big one in Florida and Disney World. That was an awesome trip there in itself, me and my dad. I had those visions, too, going to Disney World.”


(on if he was an option quarterback in high school) “I wouldn’t call it option, we ran the Wing-T. There was some option in there, and you can see that from when I used to pitch the ball.”


(on if he thought about what he would be missing had he already been retired) “No, I haven’t thought about that because I knew what I was saying when I tell you guys that I’m thinking about retiring. That’s me sensing my body physically to see where I’m at, how I feel. I’ve been playing with a nerve impingement for the last six or seven years. I know that’s affecting me. I tore my labrum early in the year, and that still affects me, working out and everything. It’s just doing a great job with my doctor, who’s really…he comes up to see me every week. So having all that going on physically, plus you have to pay for this service. I pay out of my pocket for my physical well-being. It makes you think. It makes you think about your livelihood after football, how much you’re going to have to spend to take care of your body, the toll that it puts on us. That’s the biggest concern that the NFL has right now. Even President Obama, I see, has made a comment on it, and the truth is that football does take its toll. It does take its toll on our life and our body. So that’s why physically, I was assessing myself through the years, and even now, to see how I feel. I’ve been doing some great things with my doctor, to kind of combat against the (aging) that we have.  We age faster than everybody for what we do. My whole protocol is surrounded around making sure that you’re taking care of the body. It’s one thing for what God has planned for you, as far as you to see him, seeing your maker.  But it’s one thing as far as what you’re doing physically to take care of yourself, as far as your health, as far as your eating, what you’re putting into your body, how you’re working out. I used to work out with Sergeant Slaughter over there, Ray Lewis. And I used to be like, ‘Lew’ – and (personal trainer) Monte Sanders can attest to this – like, we’re working too hard. We’re doing too much, and at some point, you’re doing too much, I think. The biggest thing is having someone and knowing your body as best you could to get that full potential out of yourself, by maximizing that. That’s why I’ve performed the way I’ve performed this year and that’s why I’ve played all the games, and why you don’t see me on the ground wincing as much – because I’ve done enough to help myself to bounce back for this job, because I’m one of the guys who was born for this, who really puts everything into football and puts a lot of things on the back burner.”


(on if he agrees with Commissioner Roger Goodell’s attempts to police the game and protect the players) “Honestly, there’s a catch-22 with that. You have to police the situation, but at the same time, you have to make sure you’re doing the right thing for the players also. Not everybody is making the money that you’re taking, and not every offense is deserving of $100,000, $50,000 fines. And these are players on that committee, Merton Hanks and guys like that, who have been in the game, but also have a boss to answer to. A lot needs to be done with it. I don’t think every fine is right. You have to go back and really look at how guys play the game before you judge them, is what I’m trying to say.”


(on if defensive players should also be protected) “Yes, defensive players should be protected, too. And offensive guys, quarterbacks in general, shouldn’t be treated better than everybody else on the football field.”


(on if the extra week off helped to gather all the tickets for his family) “I’m still getting tickets. I would actually auction off tickets to random folk if I could. But you need that week. You need that week to get everything situated. I know the organization needs it to make sure you get tickets straight, the family, as far as hotels, travel. That week is definitely good to get everything prepared, and obviously, I’m still kind of chopping things down, making sure you’ve got your lists right, especially when you come home. I asked Jonathan Vilma how he dealt with it in Miami, because he experienced it at home, and I’m doing the same thing. Everybody wants to come. You want everyone to come to the game. Honestly, I could fill the Superdome up. I could fill every seat. I would love to, but you can’t, so I want my family to know that right now. Things are starting to get a little pricey, but I’m just grateful to go through it. I could do this every year.”


(on how important it is to him to participate in the first Super Bowl in New Orleans since 2002) “It’s huge. Being at home, this is special. For my first Super Bowl, to be playing in my first Super Bowl in New Orleans, I just want to do this for the city. I’m sure there’s some guy from Louisiana on San Francisco’s team that wants to do the same thing. It’s just special.”


(on the differences between preparing this week and last week) “Well, you’ve got Colin Kaepernick and you’ve got Tom Brady. You’ve got a whole bunch of weapons in San Francisco, a great line, Randy Moss, (Michael) Crabtree, Vernon (Davis), my boy Frank Gore, the best running back I’ve ever played against. They have so many weapons. Preparing for this team versus preparing for New England, my preparation won’t be any different. It’s two different types of teams.”