FOXBOROUGH, Mass. —
Ray versus Tom.
Tom versus Ray.
Oh yeah, the Ravens and Patriots, along for the ride. Ray Lewis’ last ride, one Tom Brady hopes to cut short on Sunday in the AFC championship game.
A year after a brutal last-minute loss in Foxborough, Baltimore is back, looking for a reversal of fortune and a spot in the Super Bowl for the first time since winning it in 2001. If the Ravens fall again, Lewis’ superb 17-year career as the NFL’s best linebacker of his era will end as he retires.
Brady, the most successful quarterback of his time, has no thoughts of retirement — or of failing to make his sixth Super Bowl in the last dozen seasons.
That Lewis and Brady will bring a mutual admiration society to Gillette Stadium adds some flattery to what has become an intense rivalry.
“Both sides understand the game of football,” Lewis said. “There have been some great, great rivalries and we have one of those going on with New England now.”
Adds Brady: “It’s really a pleasure to play against him. He’s really been so consistent over the years and durable and tough. He’s so instinctive.”
At the forefront in this rematch, naturally, is Brady, who has won three NFL titles and would be only the second player to reach six Super Bowls by leading New England (13-4) past Baltimore (12-6). And there’s Lewis, the most dominant inside linebacker the league has seen since the heyday of Mike Singletary.
Brady is all about composure, accuracy and even sophistication. Lewis brings aggression, ferocity and mayhem to the field.
An odd couple, indeed, but one that appreciates the attributes of the other.
“He doesn’t give up hardly any plays, makes a ton of tackles,” Brady said of the 37-year-old Lewis, who missed 10 games with a right triceps injury, but has been a tackling machine in the postseason. “He’s great in the pass game, great in the run game. He blitzes well, like he did a few years ago. He’s really a playmaker for them, so they give him an opportunity to make those plays. You see when he makes a play, their whole sideline gets really amped-up.”
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. —
Verdigris’ Hanslovan commits to ORU
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The four-year letterwinner and three-time Class 4A state champion forward announced Tuesday that she will commit to playing NCAA Division I soccer at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa.
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Area players earn All-Region baseball awards
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After being named to the Oklahoma Coaches Association All-State Large East team earlier this week, Battenfield and numerous other players from Rogers County earned OCA All-Region accolades.
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Stanford's Appel prepares for MLB Draft a second time
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Cleveland Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden is heading home to help his cherished Oklahoma heal.
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RSU's Reyes, Apolinar compete in NAIA Track/Field National Championships
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Wal-Mart FLW anglers head to Grand Lake
The Walmart FLW Tour on Grand Lake presented by Castrol will visit the Grove, Okla., area June 6-9 for the fifth event of its 18th season. Hosted by the Grand Lake Association, the tournament will feature a full field of the world’s best bass pros and co-anglers casting for top awards of up to $125,000 cash in the Pro Division and up to $25,000 cash in the Co-angler Division.
OU, OSU, Tulsa join forces on 2013 Oklahoma Disaster Reliefs Shirts
The University of Oklahoma has partnered with Oklahoma State University and the University of Tulsa to utilize logos from all three institutions to develop the 2013 Oklahoma Disaster Relief Shirt. Net proceeds from the sale of the shirts will be donated directly to the United Way to aid disaster relief and recovery efforts across the state of Oklahoma.
Strong offseason raises bar for Tulsa Shock
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Time will tell, but if the preseason prognostications of the league's general managers are any indication, Tulsa finally looks like a playoff contender. A survey found the Shock as the WNBA's most improved team.
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- Verdigris’ Hanslovan commits to ORU