Baltimore Ravens All Pro safety Ed Reed was a no show at the first mandatory mini camp of the 2012 season. Not only did Reed not show up but he, nor his agent, offered no explanation as to why the veteran safety was absent.
Reed has stated multiple times that he is unhappy with his current contract even though he just reworked his deal a few years back for more money. Reed has also flip-flopped back and forth with retirement talks over the past few seasons, giving most fans a case of heart burn with headache on an annual basis.
Head coach John Harbaugh has publicly stated that he believes Reed will play in the 2012 season for the Baltimore Ravens but even he had no idea as to why Reed was absent from the teams mandatory practice.
Ed Reed could be fined upwards of $60,000 for missing the three day mini camp according to the rules set by the new CBA. He could also be fined an additional $9,000 for skipping the physical he was supposed to take before practice. When Harbaugh was asked about whether or not Reed would be fined he simply stated "the CBA applies".
This whole situation really puts the Ravens front office and coaching staff in a tough spot. Although Ray Lewis was quoted as saying that Reed is "spending time with family" and that "sometimes life calls you away from football". THere is still no excuse for the leader of the Ravens young secondary to make no attempt to contact the team prior to his no show. It sets a bad example and almost forces the hand of his coaches and front office to do something about it.
If he is able to get away with things like this just because of his play on the field then who is to say where you draw the line? Corner back Lardarius Webb played at a Pro Bowl level last season. Should he be allowed some slack if he feels he needs some time off? The line must be set that no one is above the law no matter how much seniority is involved. However at the same time John Harbaugh does not want to lose the respect of one of his players that demands so much respect from his peers.
One thing is for sure though, whether or not Reed decides to make an appearance at the next mandatory camp and whether or not the team decides to fine him for his current absence, none of this is good for a team with Super Bowl aspirations for 2012. Everyone needs to be on the same page and how can you do that when you are not even on the same field?