Ray Rice, Roger Goodell. Ray Rice, Roger Goodell. These are our two names for the week. They’re everywhere. One is an unemployed, internationally disgraced football player who knocked his fiancé out cold for the world to see. The other is the unbelievably high paid leader of the multi-billion dollar NFL empire. This week, both have been under extreme scrutiny.
Yesterday, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sat down for interviews for the first time since Monday’s release of the in-elevator Ray Rice/Janay Rice video. In these interviews he spoke about many things, as one shall imagine. One of those things was the future of Ray Rice in the NFL and the potential he could play again.
When asked if it might be possible for Rice to play again, Goodell said, “I don’t rule that out, but he would have to make sure that we are fully confident that he is addressing this issue.” Elaborating, he added, “Clearly, he has paid a price for the actions he’s already taken.”
Now, there are clearly lots of varying opinions on this entire situation. Some people are on different sides, but mostly people are just at differing degrees on the same side. That agreeing side is that hitting a woman is completely inexcusable and that the NFL’s handling of this incident has been, similarly, inexcusable.
On this specific aspect of the case — will Ray Rice play again in the NFL — it’s a NO-BRAINER that he will play again. Of course he will. I don’t say that in the manner that I’m declaring that he should play again; I’m saying it because I have absolutely zero doubt he will play again in the NFL.
NFL players have literally killed people and played again in the league. In 1998, Lenoard Little of the St. Louis Rams crashed his car into another car, killing a young mother inside; his blood alcohol level was over the legal limit. Little missed 8 games, and would go on to get arrested again in 2004 for driving while intoxicated.
Source: The Wiki
In 2000, Ray Lewis of the Ravens was indicted for murder charges after two men were stabbed to death near a club where Lewis was watching the Super Bowl. One of the victim’s blood was found in Lewis’ limo and the white suit Lewis was wearing was never found. Lewis settled out of court. He was never suspended by the NFL, and won Super Bowl MVP the following year.
Source: The Wiki
The bottom line is this: the NFL has an unbelievably clear history of covering things up. Of course, they’re not alone. There are endless controversies and scandals involving businesses covering up horrible acts to save face and, ultimately, make money. The NFL is no different.
Of course Ray Rice will play again in the NFL. Quite frankly, I’m not against that. If few of us have shown outrage of dozens of other equally, or perhaps even more, awful acts committed by NFL players, we can’t show outrage over Ray Rice playing in the NFL again. He’ll be out this entire season, perhaps one or two more, then he’ll come back. He and his wife will do a PR media tour. Someone will pick him up. He’ll have a good couple games, and people will forgive him.
I’m not declaring whether that’s right or wrong; I’m just declaring that that will indeed happen.