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Calais Campbell: “[The Ravens] are a first-class organization that encourage you to be yourself”

The veteran speaks on the Ravens social justice statement released on Thursday

NFL: Baltimore Ravens-Training Camp Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Last season, then-Jaguars defensive lineman Calais Campbell won the NFL’s most prestigious honor, being named the 2019 Walter Payton man of the Year. The award recognizes an NFL player for “outstanding community service activities off the field, as well as excellence on the field.” He’s been, just as the award indicates, an outstanding individual who strives to positively impact others off the field.

Now, he’s joined the Baltimore Ravens and signed a contract extension with them, and likely feels justified in signing said extension with the franchise’s recent social justice statement released on Thursday.

Today, Campbell was available to the media and I was fortunate to ask if his decision to sign with the Ravens has been reinforced after their social justice statement was released.

“It’s been great,” Campbell said. “This organization is special. Just having the ability to be able to make a statement from the players and coaches—and there were a lot of players speaking up. That encouragement, that freedom to really be able to express ourselves and have support from the organization was awesome. This whole organization has been first-class, top notch. I remember talking to [former Raven] Tony Jefferson when I was trying to figure out if this trade was going to go through and he was saying he was excited. He was like, ‘I’m very excited you get to experience being a Raven.’ Now I know what he means cause this is definitely a first-class organization that encourages you to be yourself and the best version of yourself. So here we are.”