Michael Lewis (wide receiver)
|New Orleans Saints|
|Born:||November 14, 1971|
New Orleans, Louisiana
|Height:||5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)|
|Weight:||173 lb (78 kg)|
|High school:||Metairie (LA) Grace King|
|As a player:|
|* Offseason and/or practice squad member only|
|As an executive:|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
|Player stats at NFL.com · PFR|
Michael Lee Lewis (born November 14, 1971) is a former American football wide receiver and return specialist who is currently the team ambassador of the New Orleans Saints. He was signed by the Louisiana Bayou Beast in 1998. He did not play college football.
Prior to his pro football career, Lewis was a Budweiser beer truck driver (thus, the nickname "Beer Man") whose truck route was a short distance from the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Lewis never went to college, in part because he became a father at a young age. Lewis waded through the various semi-professional football leagues, pro indoor leagues, and the Arena Football League, amassing impressive stats that resulted in him getting invites to various NFL training camps.
Lewis was signed by the Philadelphia Eagles during the preseason in 2000. He was cut before the regular season began.
New Orleans Saints
Lewis returned to his hometown to deliver beer locally. However, the New Orleans Saints signed Lewis at the end of the 2000 NFL regular season. The Saints sent Lewis to play for the Rhein Fire of NFL Europe in 2001.
Lewis was the Saints' feature return specialist from 2002 until September 19, 2005 during a game against the New York Giants at the Meadowlands, when he injured his MCL and was put on injured reserve for the rest of the season. Lewis returned to play for the Saints on October 29, 2006 during a home game against the Baltimore Ravens.
In 2002, Lewis set an NFL record for combined kick-punt return yardage with 2,432 yards total (1,807 kickoff, 625 punt). He is currently the Saints' all-time career leader in punt returns (142) and punt return yardage (1,482).
On December 21, 2003, he also played a role in the River City Relay as one of the receivers that would lateral a touchdown in a last second attempt to win the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars (in which the Saints lost). The River City Relay won an ESPY, NFL play of the year, and an ESPN.com internet poll.
In April 2006 Lewis returned to the Saints after recovering from a knee injury.
San Francisco 49ers
On September 25, 2007, the San Francisco 49ers signed Lewis to take over punt return duties. The incumbent punt returner, Brandon Williams, was released.
New Orleans VooDoo
Lewis signed a contract with the New Orleans VooDoo on October 10, 2008. Team officials were preparing to make the announcement the following week, but the owner (Tom Benson, also the owner of the New Orleans Saints) decided to terminate operations on October 13, 2008.
Lewis subsequently took a position as a "Team Ambassador" for the Saints. Though no longer an active player, Lewis was awarded a Super Bowl ring after the Saints won Super Bowl XLIV in recognition of his continuing role with the team. Lewis was selected for the Saints Hall of Fame in 2015.
NFL career statistics
Awards and honors
- New Orleans Saints Hall of Fame (2015)
- 2011 American Football Association Semi Pro Hall of Fame
- 2004 NFC Special Teams Player of the Week (Week 16)
- 2002 NFL Pro Bowl
- Associated Press First Team All-Pro
- 2002 NFC Special Teams Player of the Week (Week 6)
- NFL Alumni Special Teams Player of the Year
- Sports Illustrated All-Pro
- College & Pro Football Newsweekly First Team All-Pro
- Pro Football Weekly All-NFL and All-NFC
- Football Digest First Team All-Pro
- The Sporting News All-Pro
- 2000 AFL All-Rookie Team
- 1998 PIFL All-Star First Team
- Krysten Oliphant "Michael Lewis reveling in new job with Saints" Archived July 13, 2010, at the Wayback Machine, Monroe News-Star, July 9, 2010.
- Dominitz, Nathan (May 9, 1999). "Admirals run past Thunder". Pensacola News Journal. Pensacola, Florida. p. 44. Retrieved January 25, 2019 – via newspapers.com.
- "Michael Lewis". San Francisco 49ers. Archived from the original on May 22, 2008.
- KTO (July 10, 2017), Meet The NFL's Most IMPROBABLE Journey to the League, retrieved August 5, 2017
- CNNSI.com - 2001 NFL Preview - Hey, beer man! Lewis the toast of Saints' camp - Wednesday August 15, 2001 07:26 PM
- NFL.com | Official Site of the National Football League
- ESPN - 'Beer Man' Lewis on tap for Saints-Ravens game - NFL
- NFL Players
- New Orleans Saints - 404 Archived September 27, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
- ESPN - KR Lewis, DE Whitehead cut by Saints - NFL
- Official Site of the San Francisco 49ers - PR News
- NOLA.com - VooDoo terminates operations
- Elicia Broussard, "Michael Lewis is Still Delivering", NewOrleansSaints.com, April 24, 2009 (retrieved May 11, 2009).
- Joel A. Erickson, "Michael Lewis, Tyrone Hughes announced as next inductees to Saints Hall of Fame", The Advocate, May 19, 2015.
- "Michael L. Lewis Stats". ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved January 20, 2014.
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