Occasionally on the Baltimore Ravens blog, we'll revisit important dates in team history ...
It was five years ago on Feb. 27 that Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis became an unrestricted free agent for the first time after 13 seasons in the NFL.
There was speculation that Lewis could leave the Ravens for the Dallas Cowboys (according to Dallas linebacker DeMarcus Ware, Lewis said it was his "dream" to play for the Cowboys), New York Jets (where Lewis could reunite with Rex Ryan) or Denver Broncos (where Mike Nolan, a former Ravens defensive coordinator, was running the defense).
Surprisingly, Lewis didn't draw any interest from other teams. Six days into free agency, Lewis reached an agreement on a seven-year, $44.5 million deal to stay with the Ravens.
"My family is Baltimore," Lewis said. "The bottom line: Was there ever a decision for me to leave Baltimore? I don't think so. I didn't visit anyone else's facility. That would have taken away from what I do for my city. When I put that purple jersey on my back, I give everything that I have for every fan that's in the stands."
Lewis retired after the Ravens won the Super Bowl in February 2013. He is currently an analyst for ESPN.