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Thanks and Good-bye to "the Beer Man"


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The Saints have released KR/WR Michael Lewis.

For those not familiar with his story, he never attended college and played in the Arena League and for minor league teams like the Louisiana Bayou Beast before getting a tryout with the Saints as a 29-year-old undrafted free agent. His job driving a beer truck to support his family earned him the nickname "the Beer Man" and he became a feared kick returner and fan favorite who gave back to the community generously and often. He wore #84 in tribute to his father, who wore that number as a high school player but like his son never made it to college. He was among the best in the NFL for several years but his effectiveness has been limited over the last few seasons by age and injuries.

My favorite story is about how he found his first NFL paycheck in his locker, saw the amount, and immediately went to a Saints HR person. He thought they'd made a mistake and overpaid him because it was as much as he'd made in six months driving the beer truck. :D

He also played on kick coverage teams and frequently made the tackle, using his speed and agility to home in on opponents' returners. In a 2002 game against the Redskins he accounted for 356 total yards and two touchdowns, both on returns.

From ESPN.com's story:

"Lewis joined the Saints in 2000 as a member of the club's practice squad. He was promoted to the active roster for eight games in 2001, and in 2002 played in all 16 games for the first time in his career. He departs as the club's all-time leader in kickoff returns (243 for 5,903 yards) and punt returns (142 for 1,482 yards). He has four touchdown returns -- three on kickoffs and one punt return. In 2002, he set team single-season records for kickoff return yardage (1,807) and punt return yards (625), was voted to the Pro Bowl and selected to the Associated Press All-Pro team. His 2,432 combined return yards that season set an NFL record."

It takes an extraordinary guy to go from the driver's seat of a beer truck to the Pro Bowl, and he handled his success with grace and class. He will be missed. As a life-long Saints fan, I thank him for all he did for the Saints and wish him the best.


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One thing about it,the Titans have WR and KR issues,and he'll be a perfect fit for us IMO.

(Edit: Whoops i did see that little blurb there

At 36 with a major knee injury in his recent past? Iffy at best.
.Nevermind what i said.)
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