On a trip to Dallas from BWI last week, to my surprise, I was sitting next to Ray Lewis of the Ravens. He was on his way to the Pro Bowl in Hawaii, and I'm sure it was a bittersweet trip for him. Mr. Lewis accommodated anyone and everyone who asked for an autograph with respect and dignity. He was most kind and considerate, even while being interrupted during a telephone call for an autograph while we were sitting at the gate. I did take the liberty of congratulating him on a great season, and he shook my hand with appreciation. He handled himself as the professional he is, and never once during his private moments was he upset with anyone who approached him.
There are some great defensive linebackers that have defined NFL teams over the years, such as Ray Nitschke with the Green Bay Packers, Dick Butkus of the Chicago Bears, and Sam Huff of the New York Giants. Included in that list will be the city of Baltimore's Ray Lewis. He will be in the minds of many fans and players the definition of Baltimore and it's rich connection to the game this town loves.
Tony Mazurek, ReisterstownCopyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times