Less than a week ago, it seemed like a foregone conclusion that free-agent safety Ed Reed had played his last game as a Baltimore Raven after being picked up by Houston Texans general manager Rick Smith in Texans chairman and CEO Bob McNair’s private jet.
But now, there’s increased optimism that Reed could return to Charm City. Head coach John Harbaugh told reporters Tuesday morning that he was confident about the Ravens’ chances of re-signing the nine-time Pro Bowler.
“On the hopeful scale, I’d say it’s of high hope,” Harbaugh said in a Q and A session at the NFL owners meetings Tuesday, according to Frank Cooney of The Sports Xchange. “It’s high on the measuring stick. We’ll just have to see how it works out.”
Last week, the Texans offered Reed a deal in the three-year, $4 million annual range, league sources told Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun.
While Reed’s agent has remained in contract with the Texans, a deal is not imminent, according to John McClain of The Houston Chronicle. McClain is reporting that Reed is seeking a multiyear deal that averages $6 to $7 million per season.
The Ravens have made Reed an offer, but given the team’s salary cap restraints, it’s likely similar to Houston’s offer.
After losing Ray Lewis to retirement, coupled with the overhaul of their defense, the Ravens can’t let Reed go. Though the soon-to-be 35-year-old isn’t the same player he once was, he’s still one of the better safeties in the league and provides a strong voice in the locker room.
Even wide receiver Anquan Boldin, who was traded to the San Francisco 49ers earlier this month, said the Ravens can’t afford to lose Reed.
“A guy like Ed Reed, I don’t think you can let him go,” Boldin told “Mike and Mike in the Morning.” “He’s a Raven legend. The things that he’s done for that organization, you can’t lose a guy like that.”