The Ravens have experienced a tidal wave of emotional motivation when Ray Lewis announced his intentions to retire before the playoffs and race to the Super Bowl began. That “Ray Lewis’s last ride” train has taken the Ravens all the way to the Super Bowl for the first time since Ray last won in 2001.
But despite all the stories of the alleged double homicide and whether or not he was involved has resurfaced he still managed to hold onto a positive public perception or reputation as a man of God. Despite opponents wives berating him on Twitter or Facebook he still was everyone’s feel good story for the Super Bowl and NFL playoffs.
Now Ray Lewis is weathering a bigger storm and one that he is facing for the first time in his career. The dread did he use performance enhancing drugs story. Ray Lewis is accused of having worked with a Miami based company that supplied him deer antler extract to help him heal quicker from a torn triceps.
”It’s so funny of a story, because I never, ever took what he says or whatever I was supposed to do. And it’s just sad, once again, that someone can have this much attention on a stage this big, where the dreams are really real,” Lewis said, via Yahoo. ”I don’t need it. My teammates don’t need it. The 49ers don’t need it. Nobody needs it.”
Lewis clearly indirectly admits it is a distraction and obstacle of sorts for himself and the Ravens. As far as wether the 49ers need it or not is debatable. On one hand a distracted Lewis and Ravens is a good thing. On the other hand an angry Ray Lewis is a bad thing, a very bad thing, especially if the stories and alleged crimes from before him winning the Super Bowl are true.
Many think this has made Ray Lewis angry, and what person wouldn’t be angry when they’re subjected to hours of media interviews in the days leading up to the Super Bowl that has him being peppered with questions about the accusations.
”Me? Never angry. I’m too blessed to be stressed. Nah. You’re not angry. You can use a different word. You can use the word ‘agitated,’ because I’m here to win the Super Bowl,” Lewis said. “I’m not here to entertain somebody that does not affect that one way or another.”
Well maybe for the San Francisco 49ers an agitated Ray Lewis is better than an angry Ray Lewis. To me an agitated Lewis sounds like a distracted Lewis.
But Lewis is getting support from his head coach John Harbaugh and teammates.
‘He told me there’s nothing to it. … He’s told us in the past, he’s told us now, that he’s never taken any of that stuff, ever,” Harbaugh said. ”And I believe Ray. I trust Ray completely. We have a relationship. I know this man. And I know what he’s all about. It’s just too bad it has to be something that gets so much play.”
‘Everybody heard about it, but we’re not worried about it,” rookie running back Bernard Pierce said.
While he faced numerous questions about the deer antler accusations he didn’t have to answer questions about that obstruction of justice charge from 2000.
‘We all in here have a past. You know? But how many people actually dwell into it? You know? Nah, it ain’t about your past. It’s about your future,” Lewis said.
”And for me and my teammates, I promise you, we have a strong group of men that we don’t bend too much, and we keep pushing forward. So it’s not a distraction at all for us,” he said while clenching his fist.
”The trick of the devil is to kill, steal and destroy. That’s what he comes to do. He comes to distract you from everything you’re trying to do. There’s no man ever trained as hard as our team has trained. There’s no man that’s went through what we went through,” Lewis said. ”So to give somebody credit that doesn’t deserve credit, that would be a slap in the face for everything we went through.”
Sunday when the Super Bowl kicks off we’ll see whether the Ravens and Lewis are distracted or not.