Ed Reed pulls out of Pro Bowl

OWINGS MILLS -- Baltimore Ravens free safety Ed Reed has withdrawn from the Pro Bowl due to lingering injuries from this past season. Reed dealt with hip and groin problems as well as his chronic nerve impingement issue in his neck and shoulder.

In an emotional state following the Ravens' AFC divisional round loss to the Indianapolis Colts, Reed said that he's "50-50" on whether he'll retire. However, teammates and coach John Harbaugh expect Reed to play football again this fall.

With Reed out of the game as well as Indianapolis Colts safety Antoine Bethea and Buffalo Bills safety Jairus Byrd, the AFC squad's safeties are the New England Patriots' Brandon Meriweather, the Denver Broncos' Brian Dawkins and the Miami Dolphins' Yeremiah Bell. Now, the Ravens have four players participating in Sunday's annual NFL all-star game.

That includes running back Ray Rice, fullback Le'Ron McClain, middle linebacker Ray Lewis and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata.

NOTES: Lamont Smith, the agent for veteran wide receiver Derrick Mason, told the Times at the Senior Bowl this week that he expects to meet soon with Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome about Mason's future. An unrestricted free agent, Mason has been conflicted about whether he'll retire. At this point, though, the two-time Pro Bowl selection is expected to try to work something out to remain in Baltimore. ... Denver Broncos star wide receiver Brandon Marshall is expected to be traded after March 5, according to the Denver Post. That's when the NFL trading and free-agency signing period launches. The Ravens are considered unlikely to use their draft picks to trade for a player like Marshall, whose compensation would likely require expending first-round and third-round draft picks. Marshall has had several off-field issues and clashes with management and coach Josh McDaniels. Despite his baggage, Marshall has caught at least 100 passes for three consecutive seasons. Marshall is maintaining a low profile at the Pro Bowl after a year filled with controversies. "I'm not talking," Marshal told the Post. "I've had enough publicity."

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