CARSON, CA-This last ride that his famous father is on means that Ray Lewis III can now spend more quality time with the man who taught him the game of football, and more time physically recovering from his dad’s well-documented epic workouts. Lewis III is looking forward to that time.
But he also knows that getting time with pops means his father will have to sacrifice an area of his life that he hasn’t done since coming into the NFL 17 years ago.
Baltimore Ravens future Hall of Fame linebacker Ray Lewis announced before the start of this year’s NFL playoffs that he is officially retiring from the sport that revere him as one of the best ever, once his season has concluded. Already the owner of a Super Bowl ring, Lewis is hoping to end his career with one last memorable run to the NFL’s championship game before riding out into the sunset.
So far, so good. Lewis and the Ravens beat back the pesky Indianapolis Colts in the first round last week to advance to today’s AFC playoff matchup with Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos. Whenever that ride ends, Lewis III, who was recently in California to play in the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl at the Home Depot Center with some of the best high school football prospects in the nation, said he is excited to have his dad full-time.
“That means that I can work out with him more, he can kill me some more,” Lewis III said. “That means he’s going to be there for my games on that sideline and that means he’s going to be in my life every day more than he was. I love him. I knew for a long time, I had to keep it exclusive. I really couldn’t tell anybody.
“Now that he is retiring, that’s more time for him to be daddy to me. It’s a bittersweet moment, because for 17 years I looked on that TV, and I called him daddy. But now that he is coming home, it is a bittersweet moment.”
Lewis III will spend plenty of time with his father from now on as he embarks on his own little journey in the world of football. Considered one of the best players in the country after racking up over 10,000 all-purpose yards and accumulating 89 touchdowns during a stellar high school football career, Lewis III looks as if he is ready to follow the football legacy paved out by his father, choosing to attend the University of Miami, his dad’s alma mater.
“Everybody knows that my dad went to Miami,” Lewis III said. “I kind of wanted to follow in his footsteps, but I also kind of wanted to veer off and make my own path at the same time. I mean, my dad is great…it’s going to be hard to fill his shoes. But I feel like I am capable of it.”
A 5-foot-10, 190 pound running back out of Lake Mary Prep, Lewis III doesn’t have the robust size of his of his Herculean-built father, but the Seminole County record-holder exhibits the heart and passion for the game he shares with one of the NFL-all-time greats. Ray Lewis is considered by many of his peers to be an exceptional inspirational leader as well as being the most dominant force in the pro game today.
During the second Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl football game, which was sponsored by the United States Marines Corps, Lewis III showcased his own leadership skills, barking out instructions and encouragement to his East teammates. That is something that his father would definitely be proud of.
“He always taught me to be a leader,” Lewis III said. “Whether I got the ball or not, always cheer on your teammates. I was trying to be a leader.”