Peyton Manning on why Ray Lewis' retirement was the 'greatest day of my life'

After Ray Lewis and Peyton Manning met for the final time in an NFL game, they hugged it out in a locker room.

Reports out of the Ravens and Denver Broncos' memorable 2013 AFC divisional-round game were scant on details. Their conversation sounded "muffled" to reporters. They talked "quietly" for four minutes.


Now we have an idea of what they might have been discussing.

On Wednesday, the quarterback turned Nationwide jingle hummer served as a keynote speaker at Adobe Summit 2017 in Las Vegas. He talked about potentially getting involved in politics (not happening), hosting "Saturday Night Live" (he worried about upsetting his mom in one skit) and "Omaha." Everyone always wants to know about Omaha.


He also was asked about the hardest hit ever took in the NFL.

"Thanks for bringing that up," he said. "Nice memories. The guy that hit me the hardest, and unfortunately the most often: a great linebacker from the Baltimore Ravens named Ray Lewis. He retired two years before I did. That's the greatest day of my life. Sent flowers to his press conference: 'Stay retired, don't come back.'

"He was so explosive and fast and such an instinctive player that everytime he hit me, it's almost like he was kind of driving me into the ground, kind of like he was using me to help him get up. [He was] whispering in my ear, 'I'll be back in a couple of minutes, punk.' Very, very, very friendly player. I don't miss that at all."

Sounds like Lewis. Even his shows of affection looked like they might have hurt.

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly referred to the Ravens-Broncos game as the AFC championship game.