Gregory Bull/AP/Press Association Images Ray Lewis' motivational speeches will be much missed.
# well said
VIDEO: The best Any Given Sunday-esque motivational speech you'll see this week
Inspirational NFL star Ray Lewis is retiring after the playoffs.

Reproduced with permission from Business Insider

BALTIMORE RAVENS LINEBACKER Ray Lewis is retiring after the playoffs.

He’ll go down as one of the best defensive players ever, making 13 Pro Bowls, winning two defensive player of the year awards, and leading his team to a Super Bowl in 2001.

But years from now we’ll probably remember Ray Lewis for his persona more than anything else. Through his hyper-intensity, raw emotion on the field, and epic locker room speeches, Lewis became the blueprint for what a “leader” looks like in the NFL.

Even as his play dipped in recent years, he still was the face and voice of the Baltimore Ravens franchise.

After the Ravens lost to the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game in heartbreaking fashion last year, Lewis addressed the team. He told them not to hang their heads, and in the span of a few seconds he reconstructed a crushing loss as the perfect impetus to get better next year (via

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