Since Ray Lewis retired as arguably the baddest man in his generation of NFL ballers, it's been a safe bet that he would make a smooth transition from NFL linebacker to analyst with ESPN. The cable network officially brought Lewis on as an ESPN employee to discuss the players his Super Bowl champion Ravens have lost, so far, in the offseason -- himself included.
Ray Lewis on TV. When's the first pulpit speak coming?— Pete Prisco (@PriscoCBS) March 13, 2013
I will say this: If Lewis stays away from that, I bet he's good. And will say what he believes.— Pete Prisco (@PriscoCBS) March 13, 2013
Ray Lewis will join the MNF on-site desk with Stuart Scott, Steve Young, and Trent Dilfer wp.me/p14QSB-7CsS— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) March 13, 2013
@raylewis congrats on an amazing career it was a pleasure to watch you play and play against you ( man you're old!) welcome to ESPN!— mark schlereth (@markschlereth) March 13, 2013
This is going to be an interesting experiment because without a doubt Ray is charismatic and engaging enough to make really good television. He's the ultimate motivational speaker, and his passion for life and football could obviously make for good conversation at the Worldwide Leader. But toward the end of his career, the media came close to giving the public all of the Ray Lewis it could handle.
And Lewis revelled in it, giving all of the glory to God and saying "no weapon formed against him" shall prosper. Needless to say, that's rubbed some people the wrong way, considering Ray's past involvement in a murder trial, and the religious differences of the general public.
Most of what we get on ESPN should be just football, since he's the analyst and no longer the interview subject. One thing the network can bet on is that people will tune in to see how this goes, hate it or love it. Here's Lewis on "Mike and Mike" this morning.