Ed Reed largely talked around his demotion.
But it’s obvious that being demoted wasn’t necessarily part of his plan.
The veteran safety has had a diminishing role with the Texans, and didn’t start last week. By his estimation, it’s the first time since his early days in college he didn’t start.
He called himself “the ultimate team player,” but the team he plays for hasn’t won a game with him in the lineup, and it’s clearly frustrating for everyone.
“I’m human,” Reed said, via Tania Ganguli of ESPN.com. “I have trial and tribulations like anybody else. Did I accept it well? No, 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. . . . 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?”
Either way, he’s been deemed a lesser alternative to D.J. Swearinger and Shiloh Keo, though the Texans have tried to downplay the switch, saying it’s more about certain players being used in certain packages.
“Whether the sixth man or the starter or not, it’s just like a lot of other positions, it depends on what the offense comes out in in the first series or so,” interim head coach Wade Phillips said. “Sometimes they come out in four-wide and so-and-so isn’t in there and you say, ‘he’s not a starter,’ and vice versa. It’s really dictated by our packages and what we do as to who’s actually playing the first play of the game.”
That is certainly polite and might be true, but it doesn’t take a long look at Reed to see he’s not the Ed Reed of old, and not what they thought they were buying.