The injury-induced pain was ‘too much’ for Ray Lewis to continue competing on ‘DWTS,’ according to a new report that claimed the NFL star and his partner, Cheryl Burke, will withdraw from Season 28 of the ABC show.
Sadly, the second week of Dancing with the Stars will reportedly not be seeing the footwork of retired NFL star Ray Lewis, 44, and his partner Cheryl Burke, 35. The team will withdraw from competing in Season 28 of the ABC show, according to The Blast. Ray was reportedly forced to drop out after suffering a toe injury during dance rehearsals and “sustained broken ligaments in his toes,” sources told the outlet. The pain was “too much,” but the ex-football player “didn’t want to go out this way,” they added. Ray and Cheryl will announce their withdrawal on this Monday night’s episode (Sept. 30) of DWTS, The Blast reported. HollywoodLife has reached out to ABC, and the network had no comment for our story. We have also reached out to Ray and Cheryl’s reps for comment.
Ray had posted a PSA about self-care and the dangers of being a workaholic three days before this report surfaced. “We need to stop glorifying the person who works all weekend and rather praise the person who succeeds in finding balance between work, family, and rest. Our culture of celebrating the workaholic is one of the main reasons we are seeing an increase in mental, emotional, and physical burnout,” read the quote that Ray shared to his Instagram on Sept. 27.
Ray added his own two cents on the matter, writing in his caption, “Don’t get me wrong- I understand the grind- the effort and commitment it takes is unparalleled. But when you finally level up what else will be left? Did you cut off your friends and family or sacrifice your mental health? Make time for what matters. Take care of yourself. Mind, Body, and Spirit. #NoExcuses.” Meanwhile, Cheryl shared a selfie from her dressing room on Sept. 29, and revealed that she was in “deep thought courtesy of the upcoming live show” in the photo’s caption.
Ray and Cheryl narrowly evaded going home on the Sept. 23 episode of DWTS, which served as the first elimination round for Season 28. Last Monday night’s competition also served as the first run of the show’s new voting system! Now, live voting determines the competitors’ fates during the broadcasts, and the judges ultimately pick who to save from the bottom two teams. Ray and Cheryl, along with Mary Wilson and partner Brandon Armstrong, found themselves in that situation — judge Len Goodman made the vote 2-1 to send Ray and Cheryl onto week two.
Ray is the reported second person to drop out of the show due to an injury. Christie Brinkley, 65, revealed that she had broken her arm during rehearsals and therefore needed surgery ahead of the Season 28 premiere on Sept. 16 — her daughter, Sailor-Brinkley Cook, 21, took her place.