Ray Lewis, The Human Battering Ram


Ray Lewis.jpg

Ray Lewis is one of the most dominant linebackers in NFL history. Known for his bone crushing hits, Lewis struck fear in almost every player in the NfL. Seeing Ray Lewis crush defenders got me wondering, just how hard are his hits? The answer is quite shocking. According to ESPN's Sports Science Ray Lewis generates more force than a battering ram (used by police to break doors). 

Sports Science used high tech equipment to measure the force generated by both Ray Lewis and a battering ram. Both parties were matched up against a standard wood front door which was secured by reinforced screws, hinges, and a chain lock. The battering ram was tested first. The battering ram broke the wood door open with 800lbs of force instantly. Ray Lewis struck the door with a force of over 1000lbs. Lewis not only broke the door open, but completely knocked all of the screws and hinges out. When translated into a hit on and NFL player this force is enough to break bones. The only reason Lewis does not break his victims bones on every hit is because shoulder pads absorb 50% of the force. Even with this force reduction a hit from Ray Lewis is equivalent to being hit by a bull. Offensive players across the league must have breathed a breath of fresh air when Ray Lewis retired last year.


Great article, I miss being able to watch Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, Terrell Suggs, Hloti Ngata, and Chris McAllister go to work for the Ravens defenses of old times. Great stuff. With bone crushing hits like they used to administer, it's hard to talk about them without bringing up the always prevalent current topic of NFL Safety and concussions. As the NFL constantly tries to make the game safer to protect the players, it makes players like Ray Lewis less and less prevalent. It makes sense to try and stop concussions by making the helmets absorb more force, but the rules and penalties being called take players like Ray farther and farther out of the spotlight, unless they're getting fined 15,000 or 35,000 for giving the QB a wet willy 0.0005 seconds after he throws the ball.


Sean, I found your article to be very interesting. I don't know too much about football but I've learned a lot over the past couple of weeks. One thing that has come to my attention is playing with heart. I know that the concept sounds a little strange but sometimes playing with heart can make an athlete that much stronger. My little brother is a junior in high school and started for their JV football team in the beginning of the year. Between us, he's a pretty small guy compared to the rest of the team. Although he's almost six foot, hes maybe 170 lbs. With a body type like this, I found it hard to believe that three weeks ago, he began to start on our high schools varsity defensive line. I came home to watch him play his first playoff game and I couldn't believe what I saw. My little brother was up again a 6'3" 225 pound guy and threw him right onto the ground. Mallards Baseball talks explains how playing with heart is a different type of motivation. "The love for the game is shown through intense competition, family traditions, or simply a deep appreciation for the game." Like my little brother, Ray Lewis most likely plays with heart. His love for the game, compared to a ram, is way stronger. The ram couldn't care less about the door test. However, it probably meant a lot more to Ray. This is his sport and he clearly loves to play, which makes him one of the best in his league.


There is no question that Ray Lewis is one of the scariest men to ever play in the NFL. I could not even imagine what I would do if a human battering ram was coming straight towards me, trying to take me out of the game. It is pretty crazy that he was able to play at such a high level, at such an old age when players are continuing to get bigger, faster, and younger. It is safe to say that if Ray Lewis played in the 1930's or 40's he may have killed a few men (legally this time). Back in these days, the average weight of players in the NFL did not even reach 230 pounds! Ray Lewis who is around 6'1 and over 250 pounds would likely be going up against running backs who wouldn't have even surpassed the 200 pound mark. This just goes to show you how weightlifting and the general increase in size of athletes have brought sports to a whole new level. Ray Lewis is certainly living proof that the game has completely changed.

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