OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Ravens coach John Harbaugh announced Monday that linebacker Ray Lewis has a complete tear of his triceps muscle and is out for the season. Whether Lewis will be back next season is more unclear.
Lewis, a 13-time Pro Bowl middle linebacker, will turn 38 in May. Harbaugh, who said he heard the news about Lewis five minutes before the news conference, hasn't spoken to Lewis about 2013.
"I'm not going to make any comment on that," Harbaugh said. "But that's for Ray to speak on. I admire Ray Lewis, and everybody that knows him feels that way about him. I'll be looking forward to see what he says about that."
Lewis is one of the most versatile defenders in league history. According to ESPN Stats & Information, he’s the only player to amass 40 career sacks and 30 career interceptions (sacks became official in 1982).
Lewis tore the triceps muscle in his right arm toward the end of the Ravens' 31-29 win over the Cowboys. He was forced to stand on the sideline and watch as Dallas marched downfield to score a touchdown and pull within two points. Then, in the final seconds, the Cowboys moved into field goal range, but the attempt missed.
Lewis made 14 tackles Sunday and leads the Ravens with 57 tackles this season.
Lewis is the latest injury to hit a struggling Ravens defense. Lardarius Webb, the team's best cornerback, is out for the season after tearing his left ACL on Sunday, and Terrell Suggs, the NFL Defensive Player of the Year, remains out after tearing his Achilles tendon in April.
Harbaugh didn't seem concerned about how these losses will affect the Ravens (5-1), who are tied for the AFC's best record.
"I feel great about our guys' chances," Harbaugh said. "It's something that we've been able to do in the past. Obviously, it's going to define what we're able to accomplish this year. That's something that we're going to need to do from a leadership standpoint and from a playing standpoint. Our chances of doing it? I don't put odds on it. That's something we're going to have to get done."