Almost two years have passed since Anquan Boldin and Todd Haley got involved in a shouting match on the sideline of the NFC championship game. Boldin, however, insists that he doesn't have to clear the air with Haley because there's nothing to clear.
"It wasn't a problem then, and it's not a problem now," Boldin said. "That's something that happens almost every week in the NFL. Like I said, we buried that then, and we're OK."
Boldin, the Ravens wide receiver, and Haley, the Kansas City Chiefs coach, confronted each other on the sideline during the Arizona Cardinals' game-winning touchdown drive against the Philadelphia Eagles in the 2008 NFC championship game.
After Arizona fell to the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Super Bowl in 2009, Haley, who was the offensive coordinator at that time, left for the Chiefs, but not before he and Boldin settled their differences, Boldin said.
Boldin, who said Haley has a knack for maximizing his players' talents, acknowledged that Haley can also get under his players' skin.
"When you first come in contact with him, especially as a player, you think he's a jerk," Boldin said. "I know a lot of guys in Arizona didn't like him at first. But I think they seemed to realize that he was just trying to get the best out of them, and I'm sure they went through the same thing in Kansas City."
Haley, who has turned the Chiefs from a 4-12 team in 2009 to the AFC West division champion this season, said he would have liked to have had the chance to finagle a trade with the Cardinals for Boldin.
"Anquan is a terrific, terrific, terrific player, a terrific person," Haley said during a conference call with Baltimore media Wednesday. "He's a unique player. He's a hybrid receiver that when he gets the ball in his hands, he becomes a running back, and that's a dangerous combination. He's extremely competitive; he's extremely tough."
Haley has tangled with quarterback Kurt Warner and wide receiver Terrell Owens when Owens and Haley were employed by the Dallas Cowboys. Haley, however, made a conscious effort to tone down his rhetoric after his coaching debut included directing a one-fingered gesture at a Chiefs fan.
"He's still fiery, but it's directed in a different way," Kansas City linebacker Derrick Johnson said. "We're winning now, so all of his passion is positive now just because winning cures everything. We didn't win many games last year. Everything didn't look good, so when you're passionate about something, it's directed a certain way. But we respect him for all that he does for the team."
E. Reed honored
A little more than a week after being invited to his seventh Pro Bowl, Ed Reed was named the AFC Defensive Player of the Month for December/January.
The free safety led all players with four interceptions and recorded 22 tackles for the month, while propelling the team to four wins in five games.
Reed, who led the NFL with eight interceptions in just 10 games after missing the first six while on the team's physically-unable-to-perform list, has collected 21 interceptions in December/January since 2002, which is the most in the NFL during that span.
Reed, who won this same award in December 2008, is the second consecutive Raven to capture this award. Outside linebacker Terrell Suggs won this honor for November.
Ngata, Suggs sit out practice
Defensive tackle Haloti Ngata and outside linebacker Terrell Suggs did not practice for the second consecutive day.
Suggs' right knee was wrapped, but he did not appear to be limited while walking in the team's locker room. Similarly, Ngata did not appear to be limping because of what the team has described as a thigh injury.
Reed and center Matt Birk returned to practice Thursday after sitting out Wednesday's session. Reed, who injured his ribs while returning his second interception in last Sunday's 13-7 win against the Cincinnati Bengals, was limited. Birk, who is dealing with a sore left knee, participated fully.
Linebackers Jameel McClain (back), Tavares Gooden (dislocated left shoulder) and Dannell Ellerbe (head), cornerback Josh Wilson (head) and free safety Tom Zbikowski (bulging disk in back) were limited for the second straight day.
Wide receivers Derrick Mason (ankle) and David Reed (torn ligament in left wrist) and left tackle Michael Oher (sprained right knee/ankle) participated fully for the second consecutive day.
Optimism regarding D. Reed
Although David Reed must wear a hard brace to protect a torn ligament in his left wrist that makes it nearly impossible for him to hold the football in his left arm and hand, the Ravens are hopeful that the rookie kick returner will be available Sunday.
"He had a good practice today," special teams coordinator and assistant head coach Jerry Rosburg said after Thursday's practice. "He got some balls in his hand and looks like he's growing more comfortable with his device he has on his arm. So we'll see how it plays out."