Ed Reed looks like he's putting the concern to rest.
After months of speculation about his status for the upcoming season, the future Hall of Famer says he's playing in 2012.
"I always planned on playing this year," Reed said Wednesday during an interview with CSN Baltimore at his charity golf outing. "I never thought about not playing. I want to play four or five years after this."
Reed's comments come just days after he said that his mind was far away from football. It now appears that Reed will be back in uniform for his 11th season. Reed also told the group at the golf outing that he will be in training camp when it opens next week..
Before Wednesday's interview, Reed had declined to commit to the 2012 season because he said he needed time away from the game.
"I was reflecting," Reed said. "I retired this offseason. I honestly got myself away from football. That's why I didn't come to minicamp. I was away from football. I was spending time with my family.
"A player would be wrong not to assess himself, any player, after a 10-year career. That's what I was doing."
The veteran safety is heading into the final year of his contract and he has recently made comments that suggest he wants a long-term deal. He was not asked Wednesday about his desire for a new contract, but said that much of his focus this offseason has been on the business side of the game.
"[There's] been a lot of thought going into this year, from a business standpoint and from a life standpoint," Reed said. "Life is so much more than football.
"I spent a lot of time this season thinking about life after football because it's a tough business."
Part of the decision to return was that Reed says he's looking forward to working with some of the younger players on the Ravens defense.
"As much as I can give to those younger guys – Lardarius Webb, Jimmy Smith – that's why Ed Reed does it," Reed said. "It's not to please anybody. I don't care who don't like me. There's going to be people that don't like you. But there's more love than hate. That's why we do it."