Former NFL defensive lineman Trevor Pryce ripped into Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis after watching him struggled during this year’s Super Bowl.
Even though Pryce is a former teammate of Lewis’, he didn’t have a problem speaking his mind.
“Half of his playoff check should go to Dannell Ellerbe for making that last play on that last fade route,” said Pryce, who was teammates with Lewis for five seasons. “The other half to Greg Roman, the 49ers offensive coordinator. …
“I think (Lewis) played with a case of the nerves. I think he had the yips. I really do.”
To Pryce’s point, San Francisco was onto something in playing at Lewis early on during Super Bowl XLVII. On one run to the left, Lewis filled the gap and had a clean shot at Frank Gore, but looked silly when Gore side-stepped him. It was clear, too, that Lewis was no match to cover 49ers tight end Vernon Davis — or anybody else over the middle for that matter.
But, as Pryce alluded to, the 49ers didn’t continue with this plan of attack — among other bad decisions. And for that, Lewis got away with winning a title before retirement despite playing his worst game of the postseason.
Pryce attributed Lewis’ performance to nerves.
“He had it bad; he didn’t look like himself, even his new self. Forget his old self, that guy’s gone, that guy’s named Patrick Willis,” Pryce said. “But even the guy he was (in the AFC Championship Game), he wasn’t that guy. He had a case of it bad, badly. It was almost like he was just hoping let’s get this over with.”
Pryce makes some great points and this is exactly why Lewis is retiring. Not only does he want to spend more time with his son now that he’s headed to college, Lewis knows he’s been struggling a lot over the past few years.