Holding a victory cigar in his right hand, Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti was obviously an extremely happy man following the AFC championship game.
Heading to the Super Bowl for the first time since becoming majority owner of the Ravens, taking over for the late Art Modell after initially joining the organization as a minority owner prior to Super Bowl XXXV, Bisciotti was in constant motion after a 28-13 win over the New England Patriots.
A year ago at Gillette Stadium, Bisciotti wore a grim look on his face walking alongside Cal Ripken Jr. after the AFC championship game loss to the Patriots.
Sunday night, Bisciotti was completely overjoyed.
He hugged and high-fived players like inside linebacker Ray Lewis and running back Ray Rice, and coach John Harbaugh.
Bisciotti took a few moments to salute Patriots owner Robert Kraft, who came to the visitors' locker room to congratulate the AFC champion Ravens.
Mostly, though, Bisciotti just soaked up the afterglow of the biggest victory for the franchise since winning Super Bowl XXXV over the New York Giants following the 2000 regular season.
"It's a great, great feeling," Bisciotti said during the postgame ceremony when presented with the Lamar Hunt AFC championship trophy. "I want to thank the Krafts, first of all. They're the classiest organization in the NFL. Bob's been great to me since I got in the league and he just stopped in to wish us the best. I'm just speechless. It's just special."
Within the Ravens' training complex, Bisciotti is often complimented for being much more than a wealthy Anne Arundel County businessman who signs the checks.
He's also lauded for his vision, for his ideas, for thinking outside the box to give the Ravens the necessary resources to win.
After five consecutive years in the playoffs under Harbaugh, whom Bisciotti hired as a first-time head coach following his time as a Philadelphia Eagles special teams coordinator, the Ravens are now heading to the Super Bowl for the second time in franchise history.
"Steve Bisciotti is the most determined guy," Harbaugh said. "He's a great leader."
Harbaugh also saluted the late Modell, who passed away in September and is a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame balloting that will take place next week in New Orleans at the Super Bowl.
"Art Modell, thank you very much," Harbaugh said. "This is for Art."
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