A week after Ed Reed blasted Denver's Knowshon Moreno to force a big fumble, the Ravens safety was conspicuous for three missed arm tackles in a loss to the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday.

Although it was an uncharacteristic performance for Reed, coach John Harbaugh said he doesn't believe it was the result of Reed playing hurt.

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"I think he's tackled very well this year, up until this game," Harbaugh said at his weekly news conference Monday. "Obviously, the hit against Denver was as good a tackle as you're ever going to see. From my understanding, the neck is as good as it's been in two years, but I think it's a factor. But it's not a dangerous type thing where he's at risk, or he wouldn't be playing."

Reed, who has played the past season and a half with a nerve impingement in his neck, had five tackles in the 17-7 loss to the Bengals, and forced another fumble when he stripped Chad Ochocinco. But he also whiffed on three would-be tackles, twice against wide receiver Laveranues Coles on a run of 8 yards and a pass of 32.

"He's worked extremely hard in the weight room," Harbaugh said. "He's as muscled up as he's been since we've been here in the last two years. So I think Ed's worked really hard to get himself in position to play really well. I'm sure he's disappointed with those three tackles. Those three tackles are tackles you normally see him make."

Injured or not, Reed remains a playmaker on defense. He has forced fumbles in three of the past four games and returned an interception for a touchdown. After he stripped the ball from Ochocinco at the Ravens' 36 in the fourth quarter, he recovered it himself, ran 13 yards and then lateraled to Chris Carr for 4 more yards. That series ended with a missed field goal by Steve Hauschka.

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