Former NFL star Ray Lewis, and his professional Dancing with the Stars partner, Cheryl Burke, will be forced to quit Season 28 of the popular reality competition series. Lewis, who’s 44-years-old, and Burke danced their way through to the second week of DWTS, however, an injury will end their run toward the Mirrorball trophy early.
According to The Blast, Lewis hurt himself during rehearsal over the weekend, sustaining a toe injury in which he tore three tendons. After getting an MRI, the doctor informed Lewis that he’d need surgery.
“If you keep dancing on it, it’s going to actually rupture,” the doctor said in video montage shown on the live Monday night.
The retired athlete, who spent 17 years in the NFL playing for the Baltimore Ravens, apparently can’t handle the pain and continue dancing. The father of five seemingly alluded to the injury on Instagram over the weekend, too. Captioning a photo of himself along with text that read “We need to stop glorifying the person who succeeds in finding balance between work, family, rest,” and alluded to feeling mentally and physically burned out.
Lewis wrote: “Don’t get me wrong — I understand the grind — the effort and commitment it takes is unparalleled,” he wrote. “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.”
Burke, 35, continues to have her dance partner’s back, and commented on the NFL Hall of Fame inductee’s post with three both hands up, touchdown hand emojis. She also hinted to her 557K followers on Instagram that she had somewhat troubling and sad news to share with viewers come Monday night’s live show. Staring pensively in the dressing room mirror she wrote, “Hair courtesy of @kelseygusto, glam courtesy of @crabichuk, deep thought courtesy of the upcoming live show. #DWTS.”
The dancing duo narrowly missed being eliminated in Week 1, which sent The Supremes’ singer Mary Wilson and her partner, Brandon Armstrong home, and Lewis’s injury makes for the second Season 28 contestant to bow out of the competition early.
Model Christie Brinkley, 65, was cast as a celebrity contestant on Dancing With the Stars 2019, but, just days before the season 28 premiere, she fell and suffered a broken arm injury. Because her arm was fracture in multiple places, Brinkley had to quit the show and her daughter Sailor Brinkley-Cook replaced her in competition. She was partnered with professional dancer Val Chmerkovskiy.
According to People, Brinkley needed surgery on her wrist and arm, but was more than happy to learn that her daughter would take over her spot. She told Good Morning America, “Showbiz is all about getting a break, and Sailor and I both got one on Dancing with the Stars this season. Sailor joined the cast when I got mine…. ouch somebody stop me, it hurts to laugh!”
The celebrities still healthy and ready to hit the dance floor to compete in Week 2 include Sailor Brinkley-Cook, Hannah Brown, James Van Der Beek, Sean Spicer, Lauren Alaina, Kate Flannery, Ally Brooke, Karamo Brown, and Kel Mitchell.