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October 20, 2009 - John Mehno
I'm guessing that when all is said and done, Steelers kicker Jeff Reed won't be in much trouble for Sunday's incident on the North Side.
He violated a basic rule by trying to interfere in police business. Officers don't like that. If you decide to intervene while they're trying to deal with a situation, they'll react strongly. He faces a bunch of charges, but that's fundamental, too. A police office once told me that they make all applicable changes at the time someone is either cited or arrested. Some of them can be dropped later. But at the moment, the idea is to get the situation under control.
Reed has been a good kicker, but he's also been sort of a loose cannon. He got in trouble last year for a relatively minor incident. He gets around town, and in a digital camera/Internet/youtube world, it doesn't take long for evidence to get out there. This has to be troubling to the Steelers, which is one reason they're unlikely to retain Reed when he becomes a free agent after this season.
All that said, Reed has to use better judgment. He knows the Steelers are a conservative organization, and he has to know he's not the kind of franchise player who's going to qualify for special treatment. His legal woes will probably wind up being minor on this, but it's also likely he's punched his ticket out of town.