DeMarcus Ware and Ray Lewis were guests on the Manningcast as recent additions to Eli and Peyton’s Pro Bowl staffs, and they had some interesting nuggets on their NFL careers.
Lewis in particular shared how his legacy was nearly forever altered by where he was drafted.
The Ravens, of course, drafted Lewis 26th overall in 1996, and Lewis rewarded them by playing his entire career in Baltimore and becoming one of if not the name most tied to the franchise’s history. But on the broadcast, Lewis said he very nearly went to the Packers at No. 27.
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Lewis contextualized a picture of him on draft night on the phone, and Manning asked him if he thought he was going to be a Packer.
“I was actually on the phone with Green Bay.”
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“I was actually — Eli great question — I was actually on the phone with Green Bay…” he said. “…I was on the phone with them with the 27th pick, they showed the most interest before Baltimore. I spent the most time with them but Green Bay showed the most interest. So they told me they was gonna take me with the 27th pick if I was still sitting there. So I was on the phone with them waiting for them to pick me, then Baltimore called.”
The rest, as they say, is history.
Maybe the Ravens were swayed in seeing Lewis on the phone with someone that wasn’t them– probably not.
Lewis had a Hall of Fame career in Baltimore and won two Super Bowls while making seven All-Pro appearances. Green Bay fans may be gutted they missed out on that by one pick, but take solace in the fact the scouting department got it right.