Amani Toomer is sounding like a hater, as the kids would say.
Though expressing his admiration for Ray Lewis' accomplishments over his career and labeling the Ravens linebacker as a first-ballot Hall of Famer, Toomer — a wide receiver on the Giants team that lost to the Ravens in the Super Bowl 12 years ago — had plenty of harsh words for Lewis from the Super Bowl in New Orleans.
Toomer, now a talking head for NBC Sports Radio Network, told USA Today that Lewis has yanked the spotlight too much on himself with his retirement mini-tour. Particularly galling to Toomer was Lewis' end-of-the-game reprise of his famous pregame dance, coming when he joined the offense for the last kneel-down against the Colts, when Lewis was playing in his final home game.
"It's definitely all about him. Once a guy goes to the center of the field, goes into the victory formation on the last play of his last home game …" Toomer said, trailing off. "I just don't think the Giants or any organization I've ever been a part of, even growing up, would allow somebody to single themselves out like that.
"If you single yourself out after you make a play, that's one thing. But to walk out on the field reminds me of the WWE, like The Rock coming out. You're becoming a caricature of yourself. It's exhausting. I don't know why somebody would want that."
Toomer didn't stop there. Referencing Lewis' 13-year-old guilty plea to obstruction of justice connected with a double murder in Atlanta, Toomer called him out for his public expressions of faith and basically said Lewis is a hypocrite.
"If you want to say you're Mr. Religious and all of that, have a clean record," Toomer said. "Don't say all of that stuff if you know there's stuff that might come back. Those are the things that, when I look at him, I just think hypocrisy."
Ex-Giant Toomer lays into Ray Lewis
CSN Baltimore | Jan 31