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Lewis' 'Football Life' compelling

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Lewis' 'Football Life' compelling

The production of A Football Life: Ray Lewis, which aired on the NFL Network Wednesday night, featured footage of Lewis micd up during the AFC Championship Game.

Theres a silly little exchange between him and Tom Brady after he tackles the Patriots quarterback. Both get up and go nose-to-nose, with each demanding of the other, What?!

But after the game, they meet at midfield and express their warm feelings for each other.

In an interview during the off-season, Lewis reflects on the title game loss and again talks team and not putting a loss on any individual.

What you going to do, put that on two men? Oh, Lee Evans should have caught the ball. Oh, Billy Cundiff should have made the kick. Well, maybe I should have made the tackle in the third quarter, he says as footage shows BenJarvus Green-Ellis running past him.

There are also light moments: During the Ravens-49ers game, coach John Harbaugh is pumping up the team, walking the sideline and talking to the defense on the bench. Where else would you rather be than right here? he exhorts them. On the field, an injured Lewis replies. Sorry, man, Harbaugh says with a laugh.

Then, cameras follow Lewis to a family gathering in Florida, where, we're told, Lewis can be somewhat anonymous. To demonstrate, a fellow who's also visiting the park asks Lewis why there are cameras there. Lewis, pointing to one of his children, says the young boy is an actor in "Karate Kid." The guy apparently believes him.

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Lamar Jackson is his own biggest critic

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Lamar Jackson is his own biggest critic

Kick off your Friday with the latest Baltimore Ravens news including how quarterback Lamar Jackson has fared during OTAs.

Player/Team Notes: 

1. Following a January surgery on his left ankle, safety Tony Jefferson remains sidelined after the first week of OTAs. Originally, Jefferson was expected to return 4-6 weeks after surgery. However, now that it's 5 months later, his return timetable is becoming more and more concerning. 

2. Quarterback Lamar Jackson spoke with Ravens media Thursday about his progress not only learning the new offense implemented by Offensive Coordinator, Greg Roman, but learning the names of his new teammates as well. After another day of OTAs, Jackson was his biggest critic despite a solid day of running plays namely passing drills. “I’d say my first day, I sucked,” Jackson said to Ravens media. “Second day, I did better. Today was alright, but it could have been better. I always try to be perfect in practice. It was alright for the first week.”

Looking Ahead:

July 15: 4 p.m. deadline to get a long-term deal done with designated franchise tag players.

The 2019 NFL schedule is set! See the Baltimore Ravens defend the AFC North at M&T Bank Stadium this season. Get your tickets now at www.BaltimoreRavens.com/tickets.

Credit: Rotoworld and Baltimore Ravens for news points.

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'I started to realize that I’m not broken': Steve Smith opens up about mental health and depression

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'I started to realize that I’m not broken': Steve Smith opens up about mental health and depression

Former Carolina Panthers' star receiver Steve Smith spoke in front of a crowd of over 400 people at the fifth annual Wake up for Wellness breakfast that was sponsored by Mental Health America of Central Carolinas.

The 16-year veteran and current NFL Network analyst touched on the importance of seeking help for bouts with depression and spoke of battles that he has faced with the disease.

“On the outside you’ll see a tough exterior. But on the inside, I’m just broken or I believe even more broken than the average man. ... Because when the stadium goes dark and the cheers stop, you’re still looking for that pat on the back,” Smith said. “Throughout my whole career, I struggled with that.”

Smith discussed that in the beginning, he was so concerned about the stigma regarding mental health, that he opted for the professional to meet him for housecalls, and as time passed he realized the importance of speaking up.

“I started to realize that I’m not broken,” he said. “I’m not being sent back to the manufacturer ... I get up every morning and figure it out.”

Smith's comments on the issue came to light just a day after the NFL and NFLPA announced new legislation that focuses on mental well being.

The newly formed Comprehensive Mental Health and Wellness Committee will develop programs for members of the NFL in addition to collaborating with local and national mental health and suicide prevention organizations. Each team will be mandated to retain a Behavioral Health Team Clinician for assistance that will be required to be available to players at the individual team facilities for at least 8-12 hours per week and must conduct mandatory mental health education sessions for players and coaching staff.

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