Ray Lewis attributes weight loss to changing game


As Jets jack-of-many-trades Tim Tebow gains weight to prepare for the additional punishment he’ll absorb this year, Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis has opted to go lean.

Gantt points out in the one-liners that Lewis is lighter than 240 pounds.  So how much lighter?

Lewis won’t say.  He could be at 230 or less, and he looks noticeably thinner in a video posted at the Baltimore Sun website.

Lewis attributes the adjustments in his body to the adjustments in the sport.  “[T]he game is changing,” Lewis said, via Matt Vensel of the Baltimore Sun.  “[A]in’t no more 250, 260-pound fullbacks and the offense running the ball 25, 30, 40-plus times.”

Lewis said that coaches have told him over the years that it’s important to get lighter as a player gets later in his career.

His goal is to be able to keep up with the Gronkowskis of the world, as passing offenses rely on versatile tight ends to attack the middle of the field that Lewis previously has patrolled in search of tailbacks.  If Lewis can’t run with the tight ends, he could be chased off the field.

While the reduced weight could make Lewis more mobile, it also could make him more susceptible to injury.  And it could cause 2012 opponents that have potent running games to run right at Ray.

29 responses to “Ray Lewis attributes weight loss to changing game

  1. This makes sense for the sole reason of the number of pro bowl qbs the Ravens have on their schedule this year. Plus it’s not as if Ray is going to be the only one trying to tackle the opposing team’s running back. If he is, then that means 10 other guys aren’t doing their jobs.

  2. I always thought it was smart for players over 30 years of age to drop weight to keep their speed. Their experience should offset anything lost from the weight loss.

    Roger Craig was the first player I can remember that publicly talked about the philosophy when he was on the Chiefs. Thought it was pretty sound since he did well with the few reps he had with that team.

  3. He was losing a step on his coming out da tunnel dance. Look to get blown up this year.

  4. Players like this guy come around every 20+ years. Gained 10 pounds of muscle in 05 when they lost a couple run stoppers, loses 20+ pounds after an injury plagued season. Players who change things up every couple years, their identity if you will, are always the greatest. Look how Brian Dawkins, and Jon Lynch changed their style of play for the changing of the game. These types of players are ones you never want to see go. Have a great year Ray, you’re the man.

  5. Father Time stops for no man. Doesn’t even have the decency to slow down. In fact, he speeds up the older you get.

  6. That’s great – so he should be able to run a 40 in under 6.0 now.

    Ray is short for overrayted

  7. I wish this guy could just stay in the league until he is 50. What a great leader and old school presence he is. Even when he retires, I have a feeling he will not be far away.

  8. with no threat of suggs and johnson at DE teams like the steelers will be pounding the rock right at him. The AFC North is stacked at RB. teams in the division will run right at him see if he can still tackle at the weight then pass to tire him out.

  9. Take the time to ask some halfback around the league about Ray Ray. Donald Brown and Radars Mendenhall could probably tell tourist 10 lbs he dropped isn’t much incentive to go charging the bull…

  10. Judging from the video Ray looks to be in the 220’s, as a 3-4 ILB I just don’t see how he’s going to be able to play with that weight. Not unless they intent on moving to a 4-3.

  11. Keep up with tight ends? He already runs like he’s got splints on his legs. I wouldn’t ask him to cover anyone at this point…Anyone talking him up as a CURRENTLY great linebacker has been watching too many 10-yr-old highlight reels.

  12. I really like this response by Lewis. This adaptability is what makes him so great. Yes, the NFL is going spread offense. Every year, a larger and larger chunk of the offensive snaps are taken from a gun formation. The top qbs (Rodgers, Brady, Brees, and P. Manning, and Stafford) take the overwhelming majority of their snaps from a gun formation. This is the new NFL. Instead of fighting the evolution of the NFL, he is changing with it to be the best player he can be in whatever situation he is presented with. While Lewis doesn’t equate his weight loss with the developing safety oriented agenda of the NFL, I believe that issue illustrates the same point.

    We have all heard defensive players complain about the extra protection offensive players are given and we’ve also heard the staunch refusal of some players to change the way they approach the game. James Harrison said “I’m going to play my game. If they suspend me, they suspend me. But I’m not going to change the way I play football.”
    To me, that’s just ignorance. No matter how he feels about football, he’s still bound by the new rules and subject to the new protective nature of the NFL, just like the other 1500 NFL players. Players can’t just play their own game. If they lower the speed limit in my town, I can’t just refuse to acknowledge the change and continue to drive at the higher speed limit.

    Rules change. Plays change. Styles change. Players have to change. (whether for safety or for effectiveness) Players can either adapt and excel in the new NFL (like Lewis) or dig in to their old ways (like Harrison) and become dinosaurs (that I believe will eventually be shuffled out of the NFL).

  13. Love Ray Lewis the player. A true warrior on the field. He’s made his mistakes off of it and he’ll have to live with that but when it comes to football you’re looking at one of the best that ever played.

    -A Bears Fan showing respect

  14. Ray has his ring. There’s no doubt he’s a first ballot Haller. So what keeps driving him to get better and stay relevent?

    I’m starting to think that those “empty platitudes” he yells before games about “play for the man next to you” aren’t just empty gestures. He ACTUALLY believes this stuff.

    I think he goes out there because of people like Ed Reed and Terrell Suggs. People who have nothing left to prove and nothing other than the lack of a ring standing between them and a peaceful retirement.

    He plays for them. I think he’s promised them that he’ll do everything he can to get them to the promised land, and he’s a man of his word.

    This has nothing to do with football, and everything to do with life. Committment to your craft. Self betterment. Honoring your word. Living by example.

    But for that unfortunate incident early in his career, this man would be sainted unanimously.

  15. If I could have one player come in and give my 8th grade team that I coach a pre-game pep talk, it would be Ray Lewis. In my opinion hands down the best LB to ever play the game.

  16. I love Ray, but I’m wondering how many concussions he’s had. NFL players like him, who give it everything and play every moment like a warrior, don’t seem to have the longest life spans.

  17. r8rs4life says:Jul 26, 2012 1:43 PM

    He could lose another 2 or 3 lbs by dropping the knife


    Says the Raiders fan…

    And what kind of knife weighs 3 lbs?

  18. Obviously I see some people don’t know anything about football…can anyone name 3 LB that ACTUALLY know half the technique of tackling than 52? Dude can tackle at 120lb 150lb or 300lb.

  19. I hate Ray Lewis…wish he was on my team 🙂
    All in all, I hope this man goes into coaching when his playing days end….can you imagine.

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