Ed Reed buys a ticket on Scapegoat Airlines

January 18, 2012 | Drew Forrester

I can’t believe a decorated veteran like Ed Reed fell for one of the oldest tricks in the media handbook.

I figured he was smarter than that.

Reed bit the hook on a Sirius/XM radio interview Tuesday afternoon, authoring several interesting and now nationally-viral quotes about his team’s quarterback, offensive line, running back and, indirectly, the coaching staff.

The guys at Sirius/XM are loving all the free publicity today, as they should.  It’s not often you get a standout player to say dumb things the week of one of the biggest games of his life.

I’m not sure why Ed Reed spoke out like that on Tuesday.  I know the Ravens are equally curious as to why he would have picked Tuesday to suddenly get microphone fever.  Reed had to know there was nothing to be gained from it.  Zero, nada, zilch. There’s no way anyone in the Ravens organization welcomed him in for a cup of coffee this morning and said, “Hey, Ed, thanks for bringing up all those issues on national radio yesterday…that’s just what we needed.”

One Ravens source says the fact that Reed spoke out at all was “stunning”.  That’s a fair word.  Reed doesn’t really like the media, doesn’t like talking to the media and, as you may or may not have noticed over the last few years, the Ravens have gone out of their way to shield him from the press whenever possible.

Somehow, though, Reed snuck through the cracks on Tuesday and became the source of an interview with Sirius/XM.

Honesty is ALWAYS the best policy, except when it’s the week of the AFC Championship Game.  Honesty is always the best policy, except when it’s probably the last game – or two, depending on the outcome – of your career.  Honesty is always the best policy, except when your opponent is obeying Media-Relations-101 and not uttering a negative word throughout the days leading up to the big game.

Tuesday wasn’t the day for Ed Reed to be honest.  Tuesday was the day for Ed Reed to be smart.  And he wasn’t.

But that’s over with now.  And there’s really no sense beating Reed up for it anymore.   He was chastised enough at The Castle this morning, he doesn’t need additional piling on to take place at his expense.

There is good news for Cam Cameron and Joe Flacco in this mess.

Reed just joined them in the first class section on Scapegoat Airlines.

A Ravens loss on Sunday in New England will have lots of people pointing the finger at his ill-timed national radio act and claiming it was, in part, responsible for the defeat to the Patriots.

A win…and no one remembers what Reed said.

A loss…and he’ll be the subject of the same witch hunt Cameron and Flacco are involved in.

Enjoy your first class seat, Ed.  Next time, just nestle into seat 23F in coach and leave the honesty to someone else.