Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis is as controversial as they come. From escaping a murder charge 13 years ago to his god-fearing persona of today, and more recently, to reports that he took banned substances to recover from a torn triceps injury, he's a hot topic of conversation. But much of the attention Ray Lewis receives is derived from the attention he calls upon himself. And while most members of the media continue to eat out of his hand, there are a few that refuse to fall for his ruse. Former New York Giants wide receiver Amani Toomer is one of those people.
"It's definitely all about him. Once a guy goes to the center of the field, goes into the victory formation on the last play of his last home game …" Toomer told USA TODAY Sports on Wednesday in the Super Bowl XLVII Media Center. " I just don't think the Giants or any organization I've ever been a part of, even growing up, would allow somebody to single themselves out like that."
For Ray, it's always been about Ray. It will always be about Ray. And no matter how many times he pretends that's not the case, his actions speak far louder than his words … and he's never short on those either.
Yes, he's been extremely successful on the field, and many believe that's enough to sing his praises. Those that need more, are easily persuaded by his alleged religious beliefs. But there remain some that seem to look beyond that and see the man for the man, and not the player. Those who believe he was involved in unspeakable evil 13 years ago, and those who believe he's still a fraud today.
While Toomer stopped short of saying that, he made it clear the entire Ray Lewis shtick has grown old and tired.
"If you want to say you're Mr. Religious and all of that, have a clean record. Don't say all of that stuff if you know there's stuff that might come back," Toomer said. "Those are the things that, when I look at him, I just think hypocrisy."
Toomer is far from alone in what he sees from Mr. Ray Lewis, but it's become taboo to dare speak blasphemy about such an iconic athlete. Of course, that's some pretty thick irony as Eli Manning and Tim Tebow are often the targets of unjust and outlandish attacks, while Lewis gets a pass because… Well, there's really no good answer to that.
Retirement or not, Ray Lewis isn't going to go away for a very long time, and that's mainly because he'll just never allow that to happen.
Also…Amani Toomer, Baltimore, Baltimore Ravens, Football, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Ray Lewis