Ravens to honor Ray Rice as ‘Legend of the Game’ nearly a decade after domestic violence suspension

Ravens to honor Ray Rice as ‘Legend of the Game’ nearly a decade after domestic violence suspension

Posted on


Ray Rice spent six seasons with the before the leak of a video of him punching a woman, now his wife, in an elevator.

Rice was initially suspended two games for the incident.

But when the video was made public, the Ravens released him, and the NFL announced he would be suspended indefinitely. He never .

Exactly 10 years to the day since his final game, the team announced Friday that Rice will be honored as the organization’s “Legend of the Game” this weekend.

ray rice

Running back Ray Rice of the Baltimore Ravens is introduced before a preseason game against the San Francisco 49ers at M&T Bank Stadium Aug. 7, 2014, in Baltimore.   (Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Ryan Mink, the editorial director for baltimoreravens.com, said Rice “is being recognized for the player he was, and for the redemption he has worked towards.”

“I truly understand why I was let go and why so many hearts changed,” Rice told the team’s website. “But hopefully people can see where I’m at now. They say people can change, right? I am not the same person I was 10-12 years ago. That’s just not who I am.

“Every time I stepped on the field, I gave it my all. But I couldn’t say the same for life. Now I’m trying to be the best version of me.”

Rice quickly became one of the most productive backs in the NFL after serving in a backup role his rookie season. From 2009 to 2012, he gained 5,066 yards on 1,109 carries (4.6 yards per carry) while finding the end zone 39 times (33 rushing, six receiving) and winning . 

A fourth and 29 catch-and-run during his career gave birth to the phrase, “Hey diddle diddle, Ray Rice up the middle.”

He fell off big time in 2013, though, rushing for just 660 yards on 214 carries.

Roughly six weeks after that season ended, Rice and his fiancée at the time took a trip to Atlantic City, where they got into a dispute, followed by the punch.

Running back Ray Rice of the Baltimore Ravens pauses while addressing a news conference with his wife Janay at the Ravens’ training center May 23, 2014 in Owings Mills, Md. (Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Rice appealed his second suspension, citing a violation of league rules in being punished twice for the same offense. He was reinstated in November 2014 but still never played again. , saying he should have earned 15 weeks of pay, but the parties settled the dispute.

Rice and his wife, Janay, have been married nearly a decade and have two kids.

“A lot of things I had to overcome came out of me being at my lowest,” Rice said. “It’s a daily grind. It’s daily work. But there’s real purpose behind that. At the end of the day, I did something very wrong. I didn’t deserve anything in my life when it happened. My second chance was with my family.

ray rice and john harbaugh

Ray Rice (27) and head coach John Harbaugh of the Baltimore Ravens walk off the field after the Ravens’ 19-3 win over the New York Jets at M&T Bank Stadium Nov. 24, 2013, in Baltimore.  (Rob Carr/Getty Images)

“I knew it would be hard to forgive me, but the one thing I have been consistent with was that I was going to be better. I’m not going to be a victim of my past,” Rice added. “My legacy won’t be domestic violence. My legacy will be what I became after.”

Rice launched a nonprofit, Pipeline 2 Prosperity, to help underprivileged children and his hometown of New Rochelle, New York, in 2019, and has worked to spread awareness about domestic violence.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *