Ray Lewis has made a name for himself and chiseled his way into every Ravens fan’s heart, as well as most of the hearts of NFL fans. The linebacker announced on Wednesday he would retire after 17 seasons in the NFL.
The Ravens’ home game against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday will be Lewis’ final home game. He will be returning to the field after tearing his right triceps on October 14.
Lewis, who has gone to 12 Pro Bowls, been named first-team All-Pro seven times and been voted NFL Defensive Player of the Year, twice, is retiring to spend time with his sons. The oldest son, Ray Lewis III, will be a freshman next year for the University of Miami, where the elder Lewis starred before the Ravens selected him in the first round of the 1996 draft.
He is the only player in NFL history with at least 40 career sacks and 30 interceptions. Lewis led the Ravens in tackles in 14 of his 17 seasons, the exceptions being those years in which he missed significant time with injuries (2002, 2005, 2012). He led the Ravens to a victory in the Super Bowl XXXV in 2001.
“Ray Lewis will not only be remembered as one of the greatest to play his position, he will also be thought of as one of the greatest players in NFL history. And, he is one of the greatest without a doubt,” said Ravens general manager and executive vice president Ozzie Newsome.
“He had the one quality all of the best have: He made all the players, coaches and people around him better. It has been a privilege and a joy to be with him throughout his career. We in the Ravens have been very fortunate to be around this great man and player,” said Newsome.
Lewis, who turned 37 in May, will wear the No. 52 uniform for Sunday’s wild-card game.
Off the field, Ray Lewis established The Ray Lewis Family Foundation over 11 years ago with the mission to provide personal and economic assistance to disadvantaged youth and families in distress with a focus on building togetherness in the community. This foundation has developed annual programs focused specifically on educational development, self-esteem, health awareness and family unity. Please click here for more information.
The Good in Sports wishes Lewis and his family the best of luck.
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