NEW ORLEANS — Ray Lewis’ “last ride” hit a bump in the road Tuesday. The Baltimore Ravens linebacker was forced to answer questions about alleged use of deer-antler spray, which contains the banned substance IGF-1, during Super Bowl Media Day after a report by Sports Illustrated hit the Internet.
The report claims Lewis contacted the company Sports with Alternatives to Steroids (S.W.A.T.S.) to help him recover from his torn triceps injury he suffered Oct. 14, and deer-antler spray was part of what was recommended.
“Two years ago that was the same report,” said Lewis, who has said he will retire after the Super Bowl. “I wouldn’t give that report or him any of my press. He’s not worthy of that.”
IGF-1, described in the SI article as “a naturally produced hormone which stimulates muscle growth,” is banned by the NFL and all other major sports organizations.
For his part, Baltimore coach John Harbaugh is sticking with what the test results have produced.
“My understanding is Ray has passed every random substance test that he’s taken throughout the course of his whole career,” Harbaugh said. “So there’s never been a test that has shown up anything along those lines.”
Too much heat: Niners QB Colin Kaepernick can rifle a ball with the best of them in the NFL. Receiver Michael Crabtree admits some teammates even will even try to wiggle their way out of having to reel in a Kaepernick fastball in practice. “When we are doing individuals with the quarterback and the receiver, guys go to the back of the line when it’s Kaepernick time,” Crabtree said. “They try to time it out so that if Kaepernick is third, they want to go fourth. It’s a lot of heat coming.”
Tough pill to swallow: A year ago, Mario Manningham made arguably the catch that propelled the New York Giants past the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl. This year, however, the Niners wide out is forced to watch from the sideline after he suffered a torn ACL and PCL in San Francisco’s Dec. 25 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. “This is different for me right now,” said Manningham, who was wearing a bulky knee brace during Media Day. “I’m not down, I just wish I could help my team. You’re never down.”
Moving on: While Michael Oher has been a fixture along the Ravens offensive line for four seasons, he is still probably best known for his life being depicted in the hit 2009 movie “The Blind Side.” Sandra Bullock won an Oscar for best actress in the film, which chronicles Oher’s rough upbringing and eventual rise to NFL prospect. But during Super Bowl week, Oher isn’t too interested in rehashing the past. “I’m tired of the movie,” he said. “I’m here to play football.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.