Lewis ends his brilliant career with a title

DAVID GINSBURG
Associated Press
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Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis (52) walks off the field at the end of the first half of the NFL Super Bowl XLVII football game against the San Francisco 49ers, Sunday, Feb. 3, 2013, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Ray Lewis will ride into retirement as a champion.

Baltimore's standout middle linebacker began his final night on the football field with a motivational speech to his teammates. He ended it looking upward into a shower of silver streamers and purple confetti after the Ravens beat the San Francisco 49ers 34-31 Sunday night to win the Super Bowl.

Standing tall in the middle of a defense that survived a frenzied comeback by Colin Kaepernick and the 49ers, Lewis put a lovely bow on his 17th NFL season by earning his second Super Bowl ring — 12 years after the first.

Lewis was the MVP of the Super Bowl when Baltimore beat the Giants.

On Sunday night, Lewis and his defense played a supporting role to Joe Flacco and the offense.