Ray Jenkins was born Ray Anthony Lewis on May 15, 1975, in Bartow, Florida. He was largely regarded as one of the finest linebackers in football history. Lewis' early upbringing was not always steady. His father was often absent from his life, leaving his mother to raise him and his two siblings by herself.
He attended North Polk High School in Lakeland, Florida, where he played defensive tackle for the North Polk Warriors high school football team. As a senior, he made 72 tackles and three interceptions. After graduating from high school, he went on to play college football at the University of Miami (UM).
Lewis signed with the Miami Hurricanes as a middle-linebacker under head coach Howard Schnellenberger. As a freshman in 1995, he started all 12 games at that position and led the team with 105 tackles. The following year, he started 11 games and recorded 99 tackles. In 1998, after one season away from football due to injury, he returned and started eight games before being sidelined for the final six games of the season. He finished with 61 tackles that year.
In 1999, Lewis started every game at middle linebacker and led the team with 130 tackles. That same year, he was selected as a first-team All-American by the Football Writers Association of America and second-team All-American by the Associated Press.
Ray Lewis became a great linebacker for the Miami Hurricanes after signing as the final member in his signing class in 1993. Ray Lewis had the most tackles for the Miami football team in two seasons, with 152 in 1995 and 160 the following season. He also had six sacks in 1995 and nine in 1996.
Lewis finished his college career with three years of eligibility left and was chosen by the Baltimore Ravens with the eighth pick in the 1997 NFL Draft.
He started at middle linebacker from his first game until the end of the 2001 season, when he was named the AFC Defensive Player of the Year. In 12 seasons, Ray Lewis made 1031 tackles (third all time) and 56 passes defensed (second all time). He also had five interceptions, four fumble recoveries, and two forced fumbles. Lewis was part of three National Championship teams at Miami and was voted Most Valuable Player his senior season. He went on to have a very successful NFL career with the Baltimore Ravens where he won a Super Bowl title. Lewis was considered one of the best linebackers in NFL history and was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2012.
Crum was hired as the 14th coach in Miami Dolphins' history on January 4, 1999. He replaced Don Shula who died a month earlier.
Raymond Anthony Lewis Jr. (born May 15, 1975) is a retired American professional football linebacker who spent his entire 17-year NFL career with the Baltimore Ravens (NFL). He received All-America accolades while playing collegiate football for the Miami Hurricanes. After going unselected in the 1998 NFL Draft, Lewis emerged as one of the best linebackers in football. Over the course of his career, he won two NFL Championships (x2), was named to five Pro Bowls, and was selected to three All-Pro teams.
Lewis started out his career as an undrafted free agent with the Ravens in 1998. He quickly made an impact by not only making the team but also becoming a full-time starter at middle linebacker. In 13 seasons with the Ravens, Lewis never missed a game and finished his career with 175 tackles, six sacks, four interceptions, and two touchdowns. He also returned kicks and punts during his time with Baltimore.
After retiring from the NFL following the 2014 season, Lewis joined the Ravens' front office in 2015 as a senior advisor to head coach John Harbaugh. He remained in that role through the end of the 2019 season.
During his career, Lewis earned numerous honors including being selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2020.
He played college football at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.
During his 17-year career with the Baltimore Ravens, Ray Lewis was a two-time Defensive Player of the Year and a Super Bowl MVP. The outside linebacker led the league in sacks three times and had 491 tackles and 19 forced fumbles during his career.
He is also one of only four players in NFL history to win the award twice. The other three players are John Abraham, Clay Matthews, and Justin Smith.
Lewis came up through the University of Miami football program and started 46 of 50 games he played in during his four years there. He finished his college career with 155 tackles, 21 sacks, and five interceptions.
After going unselected in the 2001 NFL Draft, Lewis signed with the Ravens as an undrafted free agent. He earned immediate playing time as a rookie and went on to become one of the best linebackers in NFL history. In 14 seasons with the Ravens, Lewis won two Super Bowl titles and was named the game's MVP both times. He retired after the 2015 season.
When he retired, Lewis had 556 tackles, 59.5 sacks, and eight interceptions in his career. He has since returned to football as a senior advisor for the Ravens.
Raymond went to Kathleen High School and was a wrestler and linebacker. Lewis pursued his study after graduating from high school at Miami University. Ray eventually opted to forego his final year at Miami in order to pursue the NFL draft. He was the third player taken in the 1990 draft, chosen by the Baltimore Ravens after going number 20 overall.
During his career, he has had many awards given out for him. These include the AFL Man of the Year Award, the Walter Camp Award, and the Chuck Bednarik Award. In 2000, he was voted into the Football Hall of Fame as a member of the "Greatest Team in NFL History".
After retiring from the NFL, he started an organization called RISE (Re-Investing Sports & Education) that focuses on education and mentoring at-risk youth through football and other sports. The organization works with more than 20 schools across Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
Currently, Ray Lewis plays defense for the Baltimore Ravens and is one of the team's most popular players. He began his professional football career in 1996 as a free safety for the New Orleans Saints. In 1999, he was traded to the Baltimore Ravens, where he has remained ever since. Lewis has been selected for six consecutive All-Pro teams and four consecutive Pro Bowls.
Ray Lewis, a linebacker from the University of Miami (FL), was drafted 26th overall in the first round by the Baltimore Ravens in 1996. Lewis, the franchise's second-ever draft pick (Hall of Fame tackle Jonathan Ogden was the first), spent his whole 17-year career (1996–2012) with the organization. In 1999, he became the first player to win the NFL's "Man of the Year" award as well as its Defensive Player of the Year award simultaneously.
During his time with the Ravens, Lewis won three Super Bowl titles (2000, 2002, and 2006), appeared in four other Super Bowls, made five Pro Bowls, and was voted into the Football Hall of Fame in 2015.
After seven seasons with the Ravens, Lewis signed as a free agent with the Cleveland Browns on March 13, 2013. He returned home to Baltimore where he finished his career after one season with the Browns. In 2014, Lewis announced that he would retire at the end of that season; he did so after leading the Ravens to their fifth Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots.
Lewis recorded more than 100 tackles in nine consecutive seasons from 2000 to 2008. From 1995 to 2012, only James Harrison (10) and Brian Urlacher (9) have more career sacks than Lewis (79). He is also tied with Urlacher for the most interceptions with 22.