Ray Lewis celebrates the Baltimore Ravens' Super Bowl victory Sunday. (Lloyd Fox / Baltimore Sun )
Ray Lewis has been celebrated throughout the postseason as one of the greatest linebackers in NFL history. He has also been vilified by some as a person who was involved in an incident during which two men were killed after the 2000 Super Bowl. It is a complex legacy, and one that his former teammate, Shannon Sharpe, asked him about before Sunday's Super Bowl.
Sharpe, now an analyst for CBS, asked Lewis what he would say to the families of the two men killed. Lewis pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice after the incident.
"It’s simple," Lewis said. "God has never made a mistake. That’s just who he is, you see. And if our system – it’s the sad thing about our system – if our system took the time to really investigate what happened 13 years ago, maybe they would have got to the bottom line truth. But the saddest thing ever was that a man looked me in my face and told me, ‘We know you didn’t do this, but you’re going down for it anyway.’ To the family, if you knew, if you really knew the way God works, he don’t use people who commits anything like that for his glory. No way. It’s the total opposite."
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Sharpe then asked him why he gave the families of the two victims money.
"The one thing I said that, because my name was used the wrong way, money is the last thing I’m worried about, but if money will help those kids out – and not just those kids but any kid I can help, any family I can support, I’ll support," Lewis said. "So don’t just take that family and say I gave money to that family, because I’ve given money to thousands of families time and time again, just to find a different way to help somebody through a rough time."
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