Baltimore Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh shared a story during the Michigan coaching clinic on Saturday. Ed Reed being the focal point. The superhuman safety we all have an undying love for. Harbaugh states it very quickly in the video, "The Greatest Safety in the history of the game." Not a doubt in my mind.
He goes on to mention Ed Reed didn't always believe in the system Harbaugh & Ozzie were working towards. It wasn't until the bus ride back from the Super Bowl Championship Ed looked at Coach Harbaugh admitting, "Now I see it. Now I see it coach, now I see it. Now I understand".
John states they sometimes didn't talk for weeks, passing by the hallways and not muttering a hello to one another. Coach Harbaugh didn't appreciate the way he wasn't being respectful of the program.
The big takeaway here isn't to incite "IS HARBAUGH A BAD LOCKER ROOM INFLUENCE!!1!111!!" This is to instead mention that no program is perfect, and although disputes happened, instead of trading Ed, firing the HC, and reversing the progress made by the franchise, each person in their position worked and strived for the same result, and meshed to become world champions.
Ed Reed was a crazy talented player, with a brilliant football IQ. Reed was asked to use the skills and talent differently than what he believed in this program, and of course there would be disputes. It makes sense, he doesn't just arrive and become a 'yes man'. He would argue and show his opinion. Obviously he nor Coach Harbaugh were always right, and that more than anything I bet helped to better the program.
I've worked many jobs where disputes happen. The boss and I argued, showed our opinions, what and why this or that would help. Many times the boss would train and coach me to better myself. Show me what the goal is, and how the current method is striving for the end goal. This is much better than seeing him fire me. We discussed the situations, and worked through them, just as Ed and John.
Harbaugh mentioned, "You may not like me, and we may not be doing the things the way you think we should, but that's not gonna change the way I feel about you. I love you." Later on also saying, "Every player on your team should feel like you like them, and even more than that, that you love them."
Harbaugh loves his players and this team. He truly wants these players to succeeed, and patiently cares for every member. Regardless of the disputes between he and Ed, he loved Reed nonetheless. That's something that we should be proud of as fans. Our coach gives a d*mn. He cared for the players to a loving degree, and through that this team built a foundation for success.