LB Ray Lewis
(on his emotions throughout the day) "The funny thing is – I kind of said this last week over the phone during the press conference – you kind of know what the journey looks like when you're fighting through it, but it's almost impossible to see what the journey looks like at the end of it. The love that's out there in that stadium and the love that this city has for me and the respect that these players have for me – it's overwhelming. It's humbling. It's humbling because I only know what the path chose, and to see it now, to see it now, this is it. This is why you go through all those hard times."
(on if it is surreal to be back in front of the crowd and back on the podium) "Yeah. I thought I got away from [the media]. *(laughter) *But no, it's good to be back home. That's always one thing I've said about me being here for 17 years, is that I got a chance to lay my head in one place. When you can have that, that's the foundation of a legacy. So to be back where it all started from is probably one of the greatest gifts I could ever give myself."
(on if he felt like he should have been with the team at the beginning of the game or if it's felt like a long time) "I definitely don't feel like I should have been with the team. That's one thing that I don't discredit. I never discredit what I gave to the game. I gave everything I had, and now it's my time. It's my way to honor God by walking with who I am as a man and being completely happy that the game is done for me. So when I walked out there, I walked out there with a totally different perspective, because every other time I always walked out there for a battle. But this time, I walked out there as a man, a complete man. It feels good, it feels good to know I ran my race, and now I'm here."
(on LB Daryl Smith having a pick-six on his special day) "As I walked out of the tunnel, I said I should have ran out there, and he should have just tossed me the ball. *(laughter) *But me and Steve [Bisciotti] were walking down, and we were like, 'We should have come down earlier to give them some motivation.' But it's just so perfect when you come and see that type of switch in this game. This game has had so many ups and downs, but for that play to happen right then, you knew that was going to happen. I'm a Raven for life. I told my commentator buddies, 'Don't ever think I'm picking against the Ravens. I'm always Ravens, so win, lose or draw, I'm going to ride with the Ravens.' So, just to see it is completely awesome."
(on how important it is to have his family here today) "There is no me without my family. There is no me without everything that my mom instilled in me as a man – to walk upright, to trust God with all my heart, and [to] make sure, at the end of the day, I always take care of my family. And once you achieve that, then as a man, when they can come and share that with you, and they can come rejoice at what you've built and what you did … I can ask for a lot of things on Christmas, but one of my biggest Christmas gifts I've always asked for is for my family to be together, to see the things that I've accomplished. Just understanding my mom and then understanding my training for 14 years. Me and my mom, the things we went through, my sisters … It's overwhelming how much love and support that I've had my entire life. And now I get to raise my nephews, now I get to raise my kids, and now I get to just have fun and chase them around."