Ray Lewis, Lamar Jackson Honor George Floyd in Ravens Jersey

Todd Karpovich

Lamar Jackson honored the late George Floyd on social media with a photo of him wearing a Baltimore Ravens jersey emblazoned with Ray Lewis' number 52.

Shortly thereafter, the Hall-of-Famer Lewis shared the same photo. 

Both Jackson and Lewis used the opportunity to promote social justice. 

Floyd died in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25. 

Video showed police officer Derek Chauvin placing his knee on the neck of the 46-year-old Floyd for over eight minutes outside a convenience store. Floyd pleaded with Chauvin numerous times to ease the pressure, saying "I can't breathe."

Floyd's death has sparked outrage across the nation, prompting protests and galvanizing professional athletes across all sports to put an end to police brutality on African-Americans.

Chauvin was later arrested and charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. 

The Ravens, as an organization, have also responded to the incident. 

The Stephen and Renee Bisciotti Foundation and the Ravens have jointly committed funds to support social justice reform throughout the Baltimore community.

A committee of current and former Ravens players will determine which Baltimore-area programs will directly benefit from the contribution.

“There is nothing I can say to ease the pain felt by African-American communities across our country. No words will repair the damage that has been done." Ravens Owner Steve Bisciotti said. “Like many people, I am sickened, disheartened, and shaken by the acts of racism that continue to overwhelm our society. The most recent killing, involving George Floyd, is yet another tragic example of the discrimination that African-Americans face each day.

“Like many people, I am sickened, disheartened, and shaken by the acts of racism that continue to overwhelm our society. The most recent killing, involving George Floyd, is yet another tragic example of the discrimination that African-Americans face each day.

“Now, more than ever, we must all strengthen our pursuit of positive change, as we stand with peaceful protestors around the country. We must all seek to understand by listening better and learning more. We must all discover new ways to unite. We must all work to break the cycle of systematic racial injustice. Our players have been – and will continue to be – at the forefront of this change. We believe in their commitment to furthering social justice and invoking meaningful change."

Last month, the Ravens and The Stephen and Renee Bisciotti Foundation have combined to donate $1 million to support four non-profit organizations — Fund for Educational Excellence, the United Way of Central Maryland, the Baltimore Community Foundation and the Maryland Food Bank — to help combat the COVID-19 public health crisis.

In addition, the Ravens and Under Armour are providing grants for new football apparel and equipment to 1,500 local youth athletes who represent outstanding programs and make a positive impact in their respective communities. The selected programs serve diverse populations in five counties – Baltimore, Carroll, Howard, Prince George’s, Wicomico – and in Baltimore City.

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