Ed Reed said he's not thinking about the future and the fact that his six-year, $44 million contract will expire at the end of the season. The Baltimore Ravens safety was voted to his ninth Pro Bowl this week and is more concerned with the upcoming playoffs.
"It's all about the near future," Reed told The Baltimore Sun on Thursday. "It's not about the offseason or anything like that."
Reed acknowledged he doesn't have the same athleticism he did 10 years ago, but he has been affected by a nerve issue in his neck and shoulders the last few years, and he has played through a torn labrum this season.
"I know physically I feel like I can play, but also physically I have concerns for my life after football," Reed said. "(My mobility is) definitely not what it used to be when I was 24 versus 34 right now. That's where the mental part comes into it, you slow down physically, but mentally you get a lot stronger and you understand the game more, which allows me to play the game a certain way and understand how to play the game and put myself in different situations."
A 34-year-old Reed, however, still is an upgrade over a lot of 24-year-olds in the NFL.
The negotiation process between Reed and the Ravens will be interesting, considering the team will have to throw a lot of cash at free-agent-to-be Joe Flacco. The Ravens could use the franchise tag on Reed, which is tentatively set at $6.798 million. What are they willing to spend, and what does Reed want?
It's hard to imagine Reed wearing anything other than the Ravens logo. It's harder to imagine him out of the league in 2013. Baltimore's front office has work to do this offseason with two of its team leaders.
Follow Kareem Copeland on Twitter @kareemcopeland.