As Ed Reed prepares to take his place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, teammates, friends and coaches from his Ravens, college and high school years reflect on the legacy of the legendary Ravens safety with their favorite memories and never-before-heard stories. 

Ozzie Newsome 
Courtesy of the Baltimore Ravens

Ozzie Newsome was the Ravens’ general manager from 1996-2018 and drafted Ed Reed in 2002.

Going back to the draft, we liked Ed a lot and he had a first-round grade. But we did try to trade up and get another player who ended up getting selected ahead of our spot. What’s that old saying, “Sometimes the best trades you ever make are the ones you didn’t?” … What impressed us is that he was a playmaker in college on a great team filled with big-time playmakers. And he was the captain of that national championship team. That’s impressive.

We expected that Ed would be a really good player and play a long time. What we got was even better. He became so good that I would watch our games and think, “It’s Ed Reed time.” Sure enough, many times he would make the play that made the difference in the game. … Baseball has closers, the guys who come in and complete the win. With Ed, we had as close to a closer as you could have in football. He ended games. It’s remarkable how many passes he knocked down or he intercepted, or he made the tackle that gave us the win.

To read more memories of No. 20, visit

Photo Credit: Sabina Moran/PressBox

Issue 255: June/July 2019


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