In a moving ceremony in front of 70,944 rain-soaked fans, Jamal Lewis was inducted into the Ravens’ Ring of Honor at halftime of the their game against the Cleveland Brownson Thursday night.
The former Ravens running back was joined by Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti, vice president and general manager Ozzie Newsome, Baltimore Colts Hall of Fame running back Lenny Moore and former Ravens Peter Boulware, Michael McCrary and Jonathan Ogden on the field at M&T Bank Stadium.
In an emotional speech, Lewis thanked Ravens fans, his teammates and especially Newsome for so many memorable years in Baltiimore.
“It felt great to be out there in front of the fans and on the field — without the pads on, of course,” Lewis said afterward. “But it was a great deal, just a great honor.”
Lewis ranks first on the Ravens’ all-time rushing list with 1,822 carries for 7,801 yards and 45 touchdowns.
He finished his 10-year NFL career ranked 21st all time with 10,607 rushing yards, and his 2,066 rushing yards in 2003 is the second-best single-season mark in league history.
Lewis said he became emotional just running through the tunnel again when he was introduced to the crowd during the pregame introductions.
“Like I said, it never gets old,” he said. “I still get the goose bumps and the hairs. But the good part about it is, I didn’t have to go out and suit up and play for 60 minutes.”
Although he finished his career with the Cleveland Browns, Lewis said he was “always a Raven at heart” and that “it was great playing in front of these fans. It was always a live crowd, always stood behind us.”