So everyone is aware of what happened to Ray Rice in February of 2014, if you have been living under a rock here is a post I wrote that briefly outlines what happened.
But that was two years ago and Rice has not only admitted to his action but worked on redeeming himself, so why hasn’t he been given a chance?
Now, I am in no way saying that what Rice did is okay. Domestic Violence is NEVER okay. But I raise this question because of the NFL’s double standard towards players that happen to break the law. Just in case you weren’t aware of this double standard, I have a list to remind you.
- Adrian Peterson, remember he was arrested for hitting his child with a essentially a tree branch. Peterson was given a six game suspension following only playing one game in 2014, the year the allegations and charges were brought against him. But he was able to continue playing with the Vikings following his suspension until his knee injury during Week 2 of the 2016 season.
- Greg Hardy, he was accused of assaulting his then girlfriend in Carolina. He of course denied it and was able to play with the Dallas Cowboys last year after being released from his former team.
- Brandon Marshall, now with the Jets, had a violent relationship with his ex-girlfriend which were used by power attorney Gloria Allred during a press conference to attack NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. But despite his own admission of his actions, Marshall was allowed to continue playing in the league.
So what makes these three better than Ray Rice? Why were these guys given a chance to continue playing and Rice was not? Especially when Rice owned up to his mistakes and has since worked to reform his image. He went on the Dan Patrick Show, which you can watch here: Part 1 & 2. Scott Gleeson of USA Today wrote yesterday September 28th that Rice “spoke out against domestic violence and sexual assault of women at the Big 12’s “State of College Athletics” forum on Wednesday alongside several key figures including league commissioner Bob Bowlsby.” This shows that Rice not only understands what he did was wrong, but he’s working to make sure that everybody learns what can happen if you find yourself in this situation, which isn’t that what we want from our athletes? In this case to reach out to young guys and educate them on the dangers of sexual assault and violence towards women?
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Michael Vick here, as a case of why Rice should at least be given a chance to play again in the NFL. Vick actually went to jail for his crimes and yet when released he was able to sign with the Eagles and actually played in 54 games over the five years he spent there via ESPN stats.
Ray Rice has done everything he can to show that he’s reformed and has continued to work out so that he’s ready to play. In a league where Running Backs are always needed, why hasn’t he been given a chance to play?