The last six weeks have been a bit of a blur.
I’ve had plenty of late nights and early mornings, working at an exhausting pace to cover the Baltimore Ravens run to Super Bowl XLVII. It’s been the most exciting and rewarding time of my professional career, and the experience was something that I hope to never forget.
I’ve now had a little time to decompress – to wean my system off of a constant stream of caffeine and drain all the New Orleans fried food out of my veins – and to appreciate the unique perspective I had throughout the ride to the most watched Super Bowl ever.
I truly had a front row seat for sports history.
From standing in the scorching sun during every day to training camp, to sitting on the team plane back to Baltimore with the Lombardi Trophy in my hands, I was there every day for a season to remember. I stood five feet from Ray Lewis when he announced his retirement, and was then right next to him as he walked off the field at M&T Bank Stadium for the final time.
There were plenty of highlights throughout the way, but what stands out to me was how the city of Baltimore embraced the Ravens. It was remarkable to see droves of fans – more than 200,000 people – crowd into downtown to celebrate the Super Bowl victory with a parade through the city. The parade route was packed with shouting fans from start-to-finish.
I saw kids screaming at the opportunity to wave to their favorite players. I saw policemen and firefighters sneaking cell phone pictures every chance they had. I saw people climbing up trees on the parade route just to get a glimpse of one of the stars.
I don’t think I’ve ever heard so many people say “thank you” for bringing back the Lombardi Trophy. I must have heard that nearly 1,000 times on the 1.5-mile parade route.
As we rolled through the streets, the word that kept coming to my mind was “surreal.”
That parade experience capped off a remarkable month, where I constantly had to remind myself to take a deep breath and soak up the surroundings. I realize that I was incredibly fortunate to be part of a Super Bowl championship team less than two years into my time with the Ravens. I know there are some people who have worked in the NFL for decades and never even been to a Super Bowl.
My focus throughout the trip to the Super Bowl was to do the best work I could covering event and the stories leading up to the game, but also to enjoy the experience as much as possible because you never know if that opportunity will come again.
Below I’ve included links to some of my written and video content from the Super Bowl run.