Unclear if Reed will be back for first game

Baltimore Ravens star free safety Ed Reed might not be available for the start of the regular season. The former NFL Defensive Player of the Year estimated that he's 35 percent recovered from reconstructive hip surgery to repair a torn labrum, and he casted doubt on whether he'll be ready for the Ravens' season-opener against the New York Jets.

During an interview with Sirius XM Radio, Reed outlined his ongoing rehabilitation from a surgery he had in April to fix a problem that sidelined him for four games in December.

Reed said the best-case scenario is he'll be back in late August. The worst-case scenario is he'll miss roughly half of the regular-season schedule.

"It's a long, slow process," Reed said. "I want to come back. I want to be ready for the first game but I don't know how soon that would happen, how soon I would be back. You know, we're gonna continue to do the things to try and get back and at least play this year for the fans, man, cause they've been hounding me, man.

"They've been asking me, ‘Are you gonna play? Are you coming back? I would love to see you play at least one more year.' So, hopefully, we got at least one more in us."

He has been rehabilitating from the surgery in Colorado as well as Atlanta.

"It's a four to six month process to getting yourself back to 100 percent, to get yourself in shape to start working out for a season," Reed said. "It's a year-long process of getting back to 100 percent. I don't want to come back too early, man, and injure myself again."

Reed emphasized that he has been in touch with the organization about his medical status.

"My doctors were excited with my progress," he said. "I could be at least a good 35 percent right now. I'm walking, so that's a huge thing. I'm walking and messing with my kids this week. You know, I even had to do a little running but nothing major where I had any pain."

Reed said that his entire hip was reconstructed with six to seven inches of his IT band replacing his torn labrum with two incisions made by doctors.

"Plus, I have other injuries that probably had an effect causing this that I have to pay attention to also," Reed said. "So, I'm just taking my time."

At this point, Tom Zbikowski would be slated to start in Reed's place. Other options include recently signed veteran Ken Hamlin as well as Haruki Nakamura.

Despite his health problems, which includes a painful nerve impingement in his neck that has dogged him for the past few years, Reed does expect to play this year.

"I'm feeling alright," he said. "I feel like I'm gonna get myself back to good enough form to where I can play some football again. I played the last couple of games with a torn labrum and just messed my hip up worse, going back out there and doing things the way I was able to do things. "It was at a high level but don't want to go back and play in pain, man, and don't want it to be weak at all. So, that's gonna play a big part in what I'm doing."

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