Hall of Fame safety Ed Reed says he felt lied to by the Houston Texans in his short stay with the team during the 2013 season.
In a lengthy conversation with Master Tesfatsion of Bleacher Report, Reed said he was recruited to Houston with a pitch to be a respected veteran voice. However, when he tried to set that example he was met with blow back from the staff.
“You actually brought me in, recruited me, and asked me to tell you the things that I’m telling you,” Reed said. “And when I started saying that stuff, they shrugged me off. It was like, ‘Nah, that’s not how we do it.’ So I was lied to. I’m too old to be lied to and I’m too old to play these games with people who say you’ve got to play the game to get higher. I’m not playing the game. I ain’t got time for that. I’ll go do something else.”
Reed had already built a Hall of Fame resume over his 11 years with the Baltimore Ravens. He signed a three-year deal with Houston in the spring of 2013. Reed said he feels he’s still be playing at age 41 if he had remained in Baltimore. But the experience with the Texans just didn’t sit with him right, especially adding in former owner Bob McNair’s comments about the “inmates running the prison” in the wake of protests throughout the league.
“If I’d have stayed in Baltimore I’d still be playing today,” Reed said. “I know so. I had everything going the right way. I had my doctor, training, everything.
“When I went to Houston, it took me back to the South and it was so discouraging. If y’all remember, rest in peace to him, Bob McNair. But out if respect if y’all remember when we were going through certain things in the NFL you remember he said you can’t let the prisoners run the prison. He was the guy that said that. I saw that before. I saw that when I was there. The ‘Houston way’, so to say that they called it. And it’s not the city, it’s the organization at the time. And they had that old school mentality. You had coaches talking reckless to guys and I’m like, ‘As a grown man, how do you let that happen?’ Plus as a coach you’re not going to get everything out of that man that you want because you’re talking to him reckless. I was surrounded by a bunch of guys just coming to work. It was a job. It wasn’t football any more and for me that was draining.”
Reed missed the first two games of the season while recovering from hip surgery. He played in just seven games for Houston before being released and then signed with the New York Jets for the final seven games of what became his last in the NFL.