Former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice may have won a $1.588 million wrongful termination suit against the NFL but the verdict is out as to what his future will entail.
After TMZ plastered the videos of Ray Rice striking and dragging his then-fiance (now wife) out of an elevator in an Atlantic City casino last year, the 28 year-old football player was released by the NFL but Rice appealed and won. Last week it was made public that Rice was granted $1.588 million in a settlement.
“Football is a business…monetary decisions are made every day. Here the cost to move away from Rice completely was judged to be the right move by the Ravens,”
says Kenneth Shropshire, faculty director at the Wharton Business Sports Initiative.
While this may have been the right decision for the Ravens, that doesn’t mean other teams will feel likewise.
“Domestic violence is a heinous crime, but let’s face it: Rice will play in the NFL next year,” says Geoff Mosher at Comcast SportsNet.
Rice played for six seasons with the Ravens and his track record includes three Pro Bowls, four 1,000-yard rushing seasons and two seasons of 2,000 yards from scrimmage, according to Comcast SportsNet.
“In the end, if a team needs his talents, he’ll find a home. As I note in Sport Matters, we are a society that generally provides second chances. This is particularly true when an athlete’s talents are desired by a team,” says Shropshire who is also the author of Sport Matters: Leadership, Power, and the Quest for Respect in Sports.
Prior to the outcome of Rice’s appeal, Shropshire stated in his book that the public should reserve their judgments of Rice too prematurely.
“The Rice case has brought several issues to the forefront. ..But like anyone else, athletes deserve an appropriate level of due process, even in this private sector setting,” said Shropshire in the pages of Sport Matters. “As would be the case with professionals in any field, we should let the legal system make its determination before a career is irreparably impacted, stated Shropshire.
Check the video below with USA TODAY Sports’ Lorenzo Reyes discussing the potential for teams to look into picking up Ray Rice.