NFL suspends Ed Reed one game for repeated hits to head


One of the greatest safeties in NFL history has hit too many opposing players in the head, too many times, according to the league.

The NFL announced today that Ravens safety Ed Reed has been suspended one game for repeated violations of the rules against hitting opposing players in the head and neck area. Unless he successfully appeals, he will sit out Sunday’s game at San Diego.

Reed was penalized for unnecessary roughness in the third quarter of Sunday night’s game against the Steelers for a hit to the head of Steelers receiver Emmanuel Sanders. That was Reed’s second violation of the rules against hits to defenseless receivers this year. He was fined $21,000 for a hit to Patriots receiver Deion Branch in September. Reed had also been fined $10,000 for a hit to Saints quarterback Drew Brees in 2010.

“We cannot tolerate repeated violations of rules, especially rules related to player safety,” NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations Ray Anderson said in a statement. “We will continue to take the strongest possible action to deter these types of violations and protect our players.”

The NFL says it was V.P. of Football Operations Merton Hanks — a former NFL defensive back himself — who made the decision to suspend Reed.

46 responses to “NFL suspends Ed Reed one game for repeated hits to head

  1. All Merton hanks did was that dumb chicken dance now he’s suspending Ed Reed for something that happens to fast to change.

  2. What a joke. He gets suspended for 3 hits in 3 years? Ryan Clark knocks himself out every single week. Where’s his suspension? Now Ravens will be playing without Reed, Lewis, Webb, Smith, potentially McPhee, potentially Cody. Thats 6 starters and 3 secondary players. And Suggs and Ngata are playing at 75%. This is a joke.

  3. Ironic that at the end of his career when he avoids hits and tackles, he gets suspended for a hit. Oh well, take the week off and we’ll see you in Charm City for the rematch and another INT

  4. Guys like him said they wouldnt change the way they play the game – Thats fine, but there will be consequences – And here we are.

  5. Without malicious intent an on field penalty is enough of a punishment. It’s really disappointing that the NFL has to suspend someone because they don’t feel like enough points were scored in their primetime game. Awful decision.

  6. Good thing he didn’t have a bounty on those players or else he’d be looking at a year suspension.

    Oh wait I forgot, it’s worse to talk about doing mean stuff than to actually do them.

    Ok Roger, got it.

  7. I wonder if James Harrison had anything to say to Emmanuel Sanders after Sanders begged for that flag to be thrown.

  8. They suspended Mays after his first offense.

    I think it’s a good punishment but again, no consistency by the league office of fines/suspensions

  9. well isn’t that convenient – wonder what else Goodell and Rooney talked about during their phone call today.

  10. Clark’s hits are clean.. watch the tapes! hasent been suspended not once.. Quit cryin.. not the NFLs fault ya players are hurt. nothing to do with this topic. Deal with it.

  11. What was he supposed to do? If you watch the play, Sanders helmet is falling forward, the only other thing to do is dive at his knees, which could result in a season ending injury.

    Defenders need to take a stand by showing the league what the alternative is… Go at their knees. How many ACLs will it take to teach the league that this is a contact sport and helmet to helmet collisions are inevitable.

  12. No … I’m a Steelers fan, but I don’t go along with this. No way. Flag bad hits on the field. If a hit is extremely out of line, then fine the player. But you suspend a player for head-hunting three times in a season, not three times in three years. That’s ridiculous.

    The only upside to this is that Harbaugh will never again claim his guys know where the strike zone is and will realize the league’s effort to neuter defenses has nothing to do with the quality of any specific team’s play.

  13. What a joke of a ruling. That hit was clean, helmets grazed each other cause Reed targeted the shoulder. Que the bitter steeler fans who now recognize all their hopes and dreams were crushed last night by Jacoby Jones. Cheers!

  14. Can’t agree with this penalty at all. Yes, there was some helmet to helmet contact but it didn’t look like he dropped his head to try and make that kind of contact. It looked like both players prepared for impact by bringing their shoulder pads up and the helmet to helmet contact was pretty much coincidental and as far as I could see unavoidable.

  15. Ironic…some of the same people whining about this suspension were the same people applauding the James Harrison suspension for repeated violations.

    Can’t have it both ways hypocrites.

  16. The hit could not have been prevented. Sanders turned and ducked his head as reed was already in motion. There should not be a suspension because there was NO intent to go helmet to helmet. The difference in Harrison is he controls how he hits the QB who is barely moving.

  17. vincentbojackson says:
    Nov 19, 2012 4:49 PM
    Ironic…some of the same people whining about this suspension were the same people applauding the James Harrison suspension for repeated violations. Can’t have it both ways hypocrites.

    Harrison was clearly aiming at the head. Reed clearly was not (at least last night); if he had been, you would be right.

  18. unbelievable Ed would get suspended for this. if thats the case, i expect an article on Pollard getting fined for his hit on cothchery. it was a clean hit, but they’ll probably fine him for hitting to hard

  19. Ed Reed is one of the game’s best safeties! He’s someone that everyone enjoys watching and I don’t think he’s a dirty player at all. I really don’t know how the Player’s Union screwed up in that last round of negotiations and allowed Goodell Castro to keep the gavel.

    A 15 yard penalty and automatic first down is penalty enough!!!!

  20. most of the defensive guys played with the mentality of lower the helmet and hit the offensive players. time changes… so they (the defensive guys) need to adjust or else… take a sit!

  21. Watch the game against Philadelphia…Reed was diving at players knees.

    He missed McCoy and took out Jason Kelce for the season…nasty ACL tear.

    Does anyone in the NFL know how to tackle? Did Asante Samuel start up a school for defenders or what?

  22. This is a joke. Big hits used to be the greatest plays to enjoy as a fan and a defensive player. Now, you can’t celebrate a big hit because you have to look around for a flag immediately afterwards. This is a huge hit to the quality of play and.entertainment in the NFL.

    Why is there a ridiculous assumption that a physical game played for millions should be without risk? Countless Americans work more dangerous jobs for far less pay. I don’t see anyone coming in to “save” those coal miners from going underground. This is all part of the NFL being a “product”, Goodell being a profit-above-all-else businessman and pandering to paternalistic liberal politicians who think they need to “protect” everyone from themselves.

    People need to get over this darn idea that we all need to be forced to live “safely”.

  23. Merton must have spent too much money with the Refs throwing games for the Steelers. That didn’t work, so he decided to take matters into his own hands and suspect the Ravens best players.

  24. Ed Reed has made a living avoiding contact. That hit last night was unavoidable. I hope he appeals. This is just plain dumb.

  25. Remember when it used to be up to the QB to avoid “hanging his WR out to dry”? Those days are long gone. #NFLglorydays

  26. If I was a receiver ,I would catch the ball and turn put my head down. You will get helmet to helmet call every play. No way a defense player can adjust going that fast.

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