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Ravens Release Ray Rice (UPDATED with "NFL Sees Tape" Story)

The Ravens have released running back Ray Rice hours after a TMZ video surfaced showing his assault on an elevator of his then-fiancee in February.

UPDATE September 10: The plot thickens. An Associated Press report now says that the league did in fact get sent the video from inside the elevator, which Roger Goodell has denied ever seeing until this week.

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Comments

189 comments, Last at 25 Sep 2014, 9:56pm

1 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Wondering what would make a possible comeback less likely, the recently released video, or his diminished output, which placed him last among qualifying RBs last season.

2 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

It's certainly so much easier for a sports franchise to take the moral high ground when the player's productive days appear to be behind him.

What appals me is that there's no way that the Ravens didn't know about this video beforehand, and yet they obviously didn't care. Only now that it's been made public for everyone to see (and judge the Ravens franchise) do they act.

5 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

The only possible defense I'll give to the Ravens and the league is that I find it hard to believe that they were so stupid as to think the video footage would not become public eventually. If they were that stupid, and Goodell is lying about never having seen it, thinking that his lie will not be exposed, then Goodell is too stupid to be commissioner, and his bosses need to fire him.

16 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

How did they think she got knocked out? When the only defense you can give is that they didn't know ahead of time there was video evidence of what everyone already knew happened then there really wasn't any defense.

Then again, maybe some people thought she just tripped in the elevator or something.

18 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Yeah, that's what I don't understand. Who cares whether they had seen this video or not-- what did they think happened in the elevator? Why does this video change anything-- isn't this what we assumed happened?? I don't get why the NFL changes their decision based on this, except that now public outcry is more severe because a more horrible visual has been made available.

23 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Because you simply can't punish an individual based on what you think or assume happened without clear evidence. Dragging someone out of an elevator doesn't tell you 100% what led to it. It will be a scary day if this country starts doling out punishments based on what the majority of people think happened. That you turned out to be correct is irrelevant. I would continue, but that's pretty much the bottom line.

29 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

First, I'm talking about the NFL's punishment, not that of the courts-- the NFL is a private organization and is enforcing a personal conduct policy that its employees have agreed to. They are free to act on circumstantial evidence.

Second, there was never a possibility here that anything other than violent assault occurred in the elevator, BECAUSE RAY RICE ADMITTED THAT AN ASSAULT OCCURRED IN THE ELEVATOR, in his press conference and other mediums. Examples of misunderstanding drunken injuries are not really a fair analogy here.

32 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Right you are..looks like the closest he got was this:
"As me and Janay wish we could take back 30 seconds of our life..."
Makes sense for legal reasons.

That said, the more important part of my point was that the NFL is enforcing an employee conduct policy-- they're not bound by the same laws and due process that a court is (as Roger Goodell has demonstrated many times before in trampling over drug policy violators). I'm hard-pressed to believe that they made their previous ruling based on some other understanding of the situation, but now that they've seen this new video are acting upon a new factual understanding, rather than a new public image concern.

To be fair, I guess if Ray Rice directly lied to them about what happened in the elevator previously, and they took him at his word for some reason, perhaps they are now reacting to evidence that what he told them was false? Feels like a stretch, but I guess that could be a possible explanation.

41 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I have little doubt that Rice and his fiance lied to Goodell. If I'm going to criticize the league, it is either due to it being a lie that they never saw the footage (I find it implausible that the league is lying, because it is a lie that very likely will exposed pretty shortly, and I expect the legal and pr professionals in the NFL to have more brains than a 28 year old runningback for the Ravens), or because they didn't try hard enough to obtain the footage that TMZ did.

31 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

And this pretty much sums up why domestic abuse and sexual assault are as easy to commit as they are. We had video evidence of what happened. Reasonable doubt does not imply there needs to be 100% proof. Reasonable doubt does imply that someone who suffered injuries consistent with getting punched unconscious and is shown on video being dragged out of the place where she became unconscious was punched unconscious by the person that dragged her out. So from your perspective it has been a scary day in this country for more than 200 years. And that's ignoring that the NFL doesn't require anything close to reasonable doubt to punish someone right now. But yeah, maybe she fell and landed on his fist and then hit her head and he was just dragging her out to get her to the hospital as quickly as possible. It's really just dumb luck that I turned out to be correct.

37 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Look, I know you feel good about yourself when you pretend to know what happened, despite that you as of yet do not have access to the evidence that actually allows you to know what happened. Others think it is more prudent to wait until the evidence becomes available. Now, if you want to hammer the prosecutor, who saw the evidence, and decided that aggravated battery was not worth prosecuting, go right ahead. I agree. If you want to hammer the league because you suspect they are lying when they say they didn't see the evidence, or because they should have tried harder to see the evidence I may agree. To imply you knew what happened all along, however, is flat out, to be charitable, inaccurate, if what it means to "know" something is still to have meaning.

27 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

You guys really need to get out and walk on the wild side a little bit, if only for educational purposes. Three drunks in an elevator accidentally broke my foot once. I once saw guy break three ribs when his girlfriend playfully gave him a light push.

You really can't believe how frequently very intoxicated people get significantly injured without much input from others.

82 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

From what they are saying on ESPN right now, Ray Rice was completely candid about what he did in the elevator. The Ravens and the NFL knew that he'd knocked her out.

The steps being taken now are all PR-driven. There is no new information in the video. It's just that the league office has come to the conclusion that the public was horrified by the initial two game suspension, and so they've decided to use the tape release as an excuse to change the punishment.

It's all PR-driven, like most of what Goodell does when it comes to punishments. That's what happens when every single decision about punishment comes down to the whim of the commissioner, with no codified system of what kinds of punishments will be levied.

86 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Boy, I'd say Goodell has gotta go, if that is the case, if, for no other reason he'd almost need to be drunk to not know that the elevator footage would become public, and a p.r. disaster would ensue. It makes no sense to pay tens of millions of dollars to an idiot.

20 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

You ever been around really drunk people? I have. I've seen at least a half dozen of them render themselves unconscious with minimal assistance. Once, in fact, I saw it happen in an elevator.

Yes, in large measure I've had a misspent life, especially when I was younger.

33 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Which time did it appear that these people had been punched in the face (as opposed to falling down or passing out)?

What happened when you dragged the person out of the elevator?

35 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

One time two people were in a dispute, and neither threw any punches, but when one person moved his arm suddenly to remove another person's hand from it, he lost his balance and struck his forehead, I kid you not, just above the eyebrow, on the edge of a bar, and then stumbled back and tripped over another person's foot, eventually hit his head on the floor. Once I knew the person hadn't killed or permanently injured himself, I decided it was one of the funnier things I ever saw happen in a saloon. Kinda' like a real life Three Stooges short, except with two stooges. Who were hammered.

Like I said, it appears that a lot of people in this thread are pretty inexperienced in the ways of degenerate drunks.

39 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

These stories are very clearly not analogous to the situation depicted by the original elevator video, which was also able to be investigated (rather than just someone making a judgment based on a drunk visual impression) and was accompanied by an admitting of some level of wrong-doing from Ray Rice.

It's very clear that what you're describing is wildly different than this situation. What is the point, then? To convince us that you've hung out in some cool "saloons"?

42 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

It isn't clear in anything but your head. Read carefully. Drunk people do all manner of ridiculous things that result in them being injured, that involve physical conflict that someone may regret later, but do not rise to the level of criminal wrongdoing. Got it? Is it really so damned hard to simply demand that all available evidence be made public, prior to rendering an opinion, or is actually knowing the facts of a matter a secondary consideration, compared to moralistically preening?

45 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I'm not moralistically preening-- I'm not arguing for or against the level of punishment that was levied. My argument is that the video released today did not provide the NFL with any significant new facts that they were not aware of when they rendered their initial judgment. And because they have taken new action when they really have not been provided with any new facts, my argument is that the NFL is acting only out of concern for their image and their statements/posturing are disingenuous. And that bothers me.

The doubts that you are raising are beyond a reasonable standard, and certainly beyond what an employer needs to take into account when enforcing a personal conduct policy.

46 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

You abuse language when you strip the terms "aware" and "facts" of meaning by implying that they are synonymous with "strongly suspect" or "likely happened".

The NFL is in the business of marketing irrational warm and fuzzy feelings. I expect them to do what they think serves that purpose best, and I'm rarely surprised by its behavior.

52 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

"The NFL is in the business of marketing irrational warm and fuzzy feelings. I expect them to do what they think serves that purpose best, and I'm rarely surprised by its behavior."

One does not have to be surprised in order to be irritated. It is okay to be irritated when an organization like the NFL acts disingenuous or underestimates the intelligence of its fan base, even if it is not surprising. Cynicism does not have to be the high ground.

Regarding your first point...again, I am not making an argument for ability to convict in a court of law. I am discussing an employer's ability to enforce an employee conduct policy. The standards are significantly different. And I continue to feel that in that context, you are parsing degrees of wrongdoing just for the sake of parsing, and that your objective is to play theoretical devil's advocate, not to discuss this specific situation.

75 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I hear ya.
Unvoluntairily I am thinking of the Idiocracy movie, where an attorney is asked why someone is guilty. His answer: "pfff, I mean, look at him."

Proof, facts and evidence is what you need to make a decision. In science and in court.

83 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

The Ravens were aware that Rice had punched his fiance and knocked her out. That's not an abuse of the word "aware" by any common understanding of the word. He had admitted as such to his employer.

The only thing that's changed is the level of embarrassment to the team and the league that has come along with the public release of the videotape. Even now a lot of NFL people still have the strong instinct to rally to Rice's defense, to act as if he's facing "struggles" and somehow a victim of his own behavior.

103 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

From ESPN.com:

"The source said that Rice admitted to the Ravens from the start that he was guilty of striking Janay and, for the most part, accurately described what they eventually saw on the video. But the brutality of the assault when seen on the security video made a different impression.

'His description was not too much different -- except it looks more violent when you see it,' a team source said."

58 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

The only thing you have convinced me of is that you don't quite understand the words "fact" and "aware".

As a simple observer myself, it is plainly obvious that there is a huge emotional and factual difference hearing about vague descriptions of an act through clearly biased participants and actually SEEING it.

48 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Golly, I love you, too. Now, if you want to explain why waiting for evidence before forming opinions, especially when it is very likely that the evidence will be made public, is a bad thing, lemme know.

50 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

"I have little doubt that Rice and his fiance lied to Goodell"

"Look, I know you feel good about yourself when you pretend to know what happened, despite that you as of yet do not have access to the evidence that actually allows you to know what happened. Others think it is more prudent to wait until the evidence becomes available"

You abuse language when you strip the terms "aware" and "facts" of meaning by implying that they are synonymous with "little doubt".

Pot Meet Kettle.

55 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Hey, Coach, if you want to think there is a chance that 'ol Ray said to ol' Roger, when asked what happened in the elevator, "Hey, I slugged her, but I'd really like a break here", or "Sorry, Rog, ol' boy, but I really don't want to talk about it", go right ahead. I have little doubt (as opposed to knowing for a fact), that Ray said something disingenuous to Roger.

74 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

For what it's worth, I've seen several reporters on Twitter allege that one of the reasons the Ravens cut Rice immediately after the footage was released is that he lied to the organization about what happened.

Mike Freeman alleges the same in respect to his teammates here.

It's not a stretch to imagine he said something similar to the league, if the allegations of lying to his teammates and his bosses are true.

76 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

As interesting as a debate about semantics becomes, the terms "little doubt" and "know" are synonymous in general use. We could spend time talking about degrees of knowledge and what not but if it makes you feel better I'll concede that my knowledge of what happened in the elevator prior to the most recent video was comparable to "little doubt." I thought that was clear when talking about the difference between 100% certainty and reasonable doubt but maybe spelling it out a bit more will help clarify things to the intentionally obtuse in the audience.

80 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Yes, and my point has been is that you are vastly underestimating the frequency with which very drunk people are significantly injured in disputes with others, even if those others have not engaged in any criminal behavior. In contrast, after I have indisputable proof that an instance of aggravated battery has occurred, and I see an entity greatly increase it's punishment for the behavior in question, after that same indisputable proof becomes public, I am left with four alternatives. The person being punished was forthright all along about his behavior when discussing the incident with the entity . The person being punished was disingenuous when discussing the incident. The person refused to discuss the matter with the entity. The entity decided to have a meeting, and never asked about the incident. Of these four, I have little doubt the 2nd is what happened, for the simple reason that the other three entail the entity being wholly irrational, and unlike a very drunk person, this is not an entity that typically engages in wholly irrational behavior.

78 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I'm with Will here. As a Ravens fan, I wanted to believe that something unlikely had happened, like this:

They get in the elevator, she is verbally abusing him, he says something, and she assaults him, punching and slapping. He pushes her away, and being completely drunk, she falls and hits her head.

And before yesterday, you COULD believe that. All of the actual "evidence" we'd seen would have been consistent with that. I had even read somewhere that she had been verbally abusive on the casino floor, before they went toward the elevator. Ray Rice's statements did not contradict that: of course he "regretted" what happened in the elevator, anyone would, but he never said he slugged her. The only real discordant note was their awful, awful demeanor at Rice's press conference. Janay Palmer's voice and body language terrible and disturbing. But hey, maybe she's just uncomfortable in front of cameras and reporters.

Now, this is a clear case of me believing what I wanted to believe. But it wasn't an impossible scenario: it was at least 20% possible that things had happened that way. And Rice had such a good guy reputation off the field, had given his time to anti-bullying campaigns and stuff; and the Ravens brass were so conspicuously out there with "We talked to Ray about the events of that night, and he has assured us" stuff. The benefit of the doubt seemed reasonable.

Ray Lewis factors in here too. We all remember him being accused of something terrible, and it all looking very bad at first; but ultimately his specific actions turned out not to be as bad as it first appeared. Not that obstruction of justice is laudable: but it turned out Lewis was not Aaron Hernandez either. Maybe this was the same thing.

Some of my fellow Ravens fans had already written off Ray Rice when the first video emerged; but I kept thinking that was a rush to judgment. We jut didn't know. But now, we know.

81 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Hey. I always thought it was likely that he slugged her. I also thought it was nearly certain that the video from the elevator would become public pretty shortly, because somebody like Harvey Levin would pay for it. I was thus very content to wait until I knew more before rendering a strong opinion. My major dispute has been with a prosecutor who decided to send Rice to a pre-trial diversion program, without making the pertinent evidence available to the public.

56 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Apropos:

My father was once on the jury for a manslaughter trial. The jist of the incident was that two men who had been drinking in a bar got into an argument. One pushed the other in anger, not overly hard according to witnesses, and clearly with no intention of inflicting serious injury. The pushed man lost his balance, hit his head on a table and died.

I believe the verdict was guilty of involuntary manslaughter.

Funny, I just wikipedia'd involuntary manslaughter and it has verbiage similar to my father's case "A person who pushes off an aggressive drunk, who then falls and dies, has probably not committed manslaughter, although in some jurisdictions it may depend whether "excessive force" was used or other factors."

I wonder if the who's who of starting the argument and how aggressive each party was actually mattered in my father's case.

57 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

A corpse always increases the chance of conviction for felony violence, because the jury has a much harder time, with the aid of a good defense attorney, rationalizing away any evidence of criminal intent.

3 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

The Ravens are shocked--SHOCKED--the public actually got to see the video they by all accounts were able to review months ago.

4 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

http://deadspin.com/someone-is-lying-about-whether-the-nfl-saw-the-ray-rice-1631901404/all

Will be interesting to see how many media heads that got burned on this
will rebel against Old Roger Goodell

--------------------------------------
The standard is the standard!

6 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

If Goodell is so dumb that he thinks he can lie about not having seen the footage, and that the lie won't be very publicly revealed, then he really is too stupid for the owners to continue to employ him. This is the only reason I think there is a chance that he is telling the truth when he says he hadn't seen it until this morning.

7 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Though if he's telling the truth today, then he's stupid in a different way, for knowing that there was video of what happened inside the elevator and making a suspension determination without getting to see it.

10 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Yeah, thats dumb as well, but if he demanded Rice and his fiance give a detailed account of what happened, while telling them "If it turns out you lied to me, I'll reopen the case, and suspend you indefinitely", then it's not quite as dumb as lying abut never having seen the video, when you actually have.

11 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I think there is an excellent chance this particular situation will cost Roger Goodell his job. The NFL is incredibly sensitive to its image, and you have both a team and the NFL itself say they reviewed a video that is beyond shocking in its violence. Either they don't care or didn't see it, and Goodell is the face of that.

12 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I'd like to speak to someone with some legal expertise (which certainly does not encompass all with a law degree) as to whether there was any downside to the NFL offering to buy the footage in the manner that Harvey Levin at TMZ eventually did.

13 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I don't know about the legalities, but from a technological standpoint, it would be stupid to think can suppress any information.

There would literally be nothing stopping the possessor of the footage from having unlimited number of backups and no way to determine if they have been made or how many exist.

59 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

There might have been legal barriers to seeing it. I'm sure that if RR's lawyer had any power at all to make it hard to see by outside parties (the NFL would be an outside party, not involved in any criminal case), he would have tried to do so.

A journalist is more likely to extract a leaked document because they tend to have better legal mechanisms for hiding their sources.

IANAL

8 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

As to the really important stuff, how do all the residents in that legal jurisdiction feel about having a prosecutor who apparently thinks that aggravated battery, with indisputable evidence, is worthy of pre-trial diversion?

19 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

"how do all the residents in that legal jurisdiction feel about having a prosecutor who apparently thinks that aggravated battery, with indisputable evidence, is worthy of pre-trial diversion?"

Ok, I'll play devil's advocate here.

At the time of adjudication, the victim refused to press charges. The perpetrator had no criminal record, no history. He's also a highly-paid individual with a very short career window. Does society as a whole benefit by paying to try and incarcerate Ray Rice rather than trying to correct the behavior in a less costly manner? Which is something that happens every single day in every single jurisdiction. Isn't a pre-trial behavioral modification program for a first-time offender a more rational approach?

I will also say that it's interesting to see the reaction to the video. There's nothing in it that we didn't know had to be there. She hit him, he hit her twice, she fell. I haven't followed it closely, but wasn't that already the story? Yes, there's a visceral reaction that one has to seeing it, but is there any new information being presented here?

Let me be clear - I'm not excusing what he did, and nothing about this should be construed as an excuse. The behavior that he engaged in is, in my mind, inexcusable. But if he doesn't ever earn another nickel in the NFL, well, I'm not certain that justice is served by that, either. This is not an Aaron Hernandez/OJ Simpson/Rae Carruth situation.

26 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I didn't know what had to be there, because I've seen very drunk people rendered unconscious without being criminally assaulted.

Yes, I think our society would be better served if every single instance of aggravated battery, when there was overwhelming evidence that the crime had been committed, was prosecuted to the utmost extent available under the law.

60 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

That is a little extreme. What if it is punishable by death or life in prison?

There is a reason that judges and prosecutors have flexibility in the charges and punishments. Not every variation of a crime is equal, not every variation should go the the 'utmost extent available under the law'.

There is also good reason for the courts and prosecutors to focus their resources on what is the best benefit for society. Every hour and dollar spend on domestic abuse is an hour and dollar taken away from something else.

There is not an infinite supply of policing, prosecuting, and court time. In my opinion being a celebrity couple shouldn't make it any higher priority than a poor couple in the ghetto.

Am I defending this? No! Its horrible. She should leave him and take half his money. Should the courts necessarily spend as much public time and money going after him as possible? I don't know -- that depends on what that time and money is being diverted from.

62 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Well, I'd oppose such punishments for aggravated battery. I do think that the penalties for aggravated battery tend to be lighter than optimal. I agree that the state must prioritize. I really think that prison should be reserved for the criminally violent alone, and the most monumental (think Madoff) property crime.

85 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

If the police have clear evidence that a crime has been committed, evidence that doesn't rely on the testimony of the victim, it is the duty of the DA to prosecute. He's not granted the latitude to decide that it's better for society to let this one guy off.

If society as a whole doesn't want assault and battery to be prosecuted, they need to change the laws.

169 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

"If the police have clear evidence that a crime has been committed, evidence that doesn't rely on the testimony of the victim, it is the duty of the DA to prosecute. He's not granted the latitude to decide that it's better for society to let this one guy off."
You would be incorrect, that is exactly the prosecutor's duty and the job has that sort of latitude for a purpose. The justice system has limited resources and the prosecutor is just one of the people responsible for allocation of those resources. The questions the prosecutor probably asked went something like this:
Do we have a pattern of behavior that suggests that this is an ongoing issue?
What is the position of the victim?
What is the attitude of the accused?
What is the risk to the community as a whole?
Is there a reasonable alternative to prosecution that might reasonably provide a better rehabilitative outcome?
The purpose of Justice has much more to do with restoring equity and rehabilitation than vengeance.

The NFL was in a very different position. Their product is all about violence but it is supposed to be controlled violence. When one of their employees lacks control of their violent tendencies the game when on the field they are subject to penalty. When they do so in the general society they are (and should be) subject to losing their livelihood. The NFL screwed up; the prosecutor probably did not.

9 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I am trying to think of a way this matter could have been more mishandled but really the league and the club pretty much nailed it.

Incompetence 101, thy name is the NFL

15 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I don't understand why NOW the NFL and the Ravens think they need to take decisive action. What did they think happened in the elevator before??? Wasn't today's video basically exactly what everyone assumed happened? Isn't that why they punished him in the first place, because very convincing circumstantial evidence indicated a violent act had taken place?

Ray Rice and his actions are no different today than they were a few months ago...it was just as clear then that he had battered his girlfriend. All that has changed now is we have a visual to accompany that fact. For the NFL/Ravens to handle him with kid gloves months ago and to suspend him indefinitely now makes no sense to me and seems highly hypocritical. It's a reaction to public outcry, not to the criminal act.

22 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I don't think it was the case that everyone assumed that this is what happened in the elevator. I think given the fact that 1) he got very light treatment by the prosecutors (who had seen the video), 2) his now-wife was also initially arrested and was apologetic about her actions, and 3) the possible fact that his now-wife may have downplayed the incident when meeting with the Ravens and Godell suggested that it may have been drunken horseplay gone awry rather than assault.

Obviously that's not the case.

24 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I think if the video had shown her punching him in the face several times and him hitting back, there wouldn't be this level of outcry. Yes, he's clearly FAR bigger than her, but people can understand the concept of "hitting back", even if it's an order of magnitude higher. The Ravens (and Rice's fiancee/wife) had even implied it was somewhat mutual, and she was initially also charged in the matter (charges later dropped). If you're looking at a situation where both parties were involved in a physical altercation, there is a chance that video shows Rice pushing her off hard and her hitting her head or whatever, and people can say, "See, he wasn't trying to hurt her, he was defending himself" and move on. I can imagine situations where she winds up unconscious where Rice looks like a bully, but not an absolute monster.

Instead, you get a video of a professional athlete punching his fiancee in the head while she's standing there. There's no way I can imagine anyone doing something to justify that kind of a hit. If you are the Ravens or the NFL (or the prosecutor) and have seen that video, I don't know how at that exact moment Ray Rice still has any chance at a career. Or avoiding jail, actually.

44 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Nothing about the legality in my post, simply about the PR hit. There is an established and well-worn precedent in the NFL that you do not need to wait for a conviction to enact discipline of any kind. I'm simply saying if the NFL didn't see the video (which seems inconceivably dumb), I can imagine varied situations in which Ray Rice would have not been banned for life because nobody in authority was aware of the nature of the assault.

Ray Rice is out of the NFL because he did something that looks utterly terrible. Had it been something that just looked "pretty bad", he'd be back in a few weeks.

49 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

The victim, whether intimidated, misguided, or correct in the belief that this was a terrible aberration[1] in the behavior of Mr. Rice went ahead and married him, she apparently spoke to both the league and the club in a manner supporting Mr Rice.

It is entirely possible they believed the fight to have been an incident where she was hitting him attacking him aggressively and he flailed his arms, or struck out and made contact with her, knocking her down, where perhaps she hit her head and was knocked unconscious. Now that we've seen the video we know this was not what happened, that was a truly vicious, cold blooded, savage attack. Implying to me that this was not the first, and likely not the last time he's done something like that.
I do not know if they saw the video or not before it was released.
If they did, they made a huge mistake in not suspending him for much longer than they originally did. The fact that he is, based on last season, essentially no better than Trent Richardson at this point in his career definitely made the Raven's decision easier. But I hope everyone would agree that what we saw on that tape is not the sort of "Woman gets in man's face, man waves arms and woman is struck in the face"[1] story some had imagined this case to be about.

1: Who knows, maybe he's a great human being and together they will have a wonderful and happy life. I hope so, wish them both well. Odds seem against this, but we can dream of a better world.

2: That isn't acceptable, you don't hit people, period, ever. Not just women, you don't hit people, they teach you that in kindergarten. But it's a different sort of transgression than what he did in that elevator.

17 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

The irony is - I think if Ray had been suspended for the whole year, he probably would still be on the team right now. I am more disgusted by our legal system frankly.

108 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Yes, this has been a mess through and through. And lest we forget, in a twist not unlike many similar cases, all punishment dished out to Rice also hurts his wife.

------
Who, me?

28 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

It's interesting that the Ravens restructured Lardarius Webb's contract right before the season started to free up some cap room, but didn't add any body.

Now it looks like that added room is enough for the Ravens to cut Rice without going over the cap. They obviously knew this was coming.

EDIT:
Maybe I'm wrong, they may have spread the hit over to next year. However they did cut a CB and promote practice squad RB Fitzgerald Touissant before the opener, so they may still have known.

79 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Ravens needed the extra cap space when the season started, because you stop using the Rule of 51 and start using the whole roster to count toward the cap.

Derek Cox was cut because he was a vested veteran, and if he had been on the week 1 roster his season salary would have become guaranteed. They probably bring him back this week, now that they're not on the hook for his whole salary.

Point being, the Ravens roster moved with Cox and Touissant do NOT mean that "they obviously knew this was coming." They were completely explainable move on their own.

25 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I also wonder if there is any kind of double jeopardy claus that will allow Rice to appeal the suspension. I can't imagine the NFLPA would allow this kind of action by the commissioner, even though Rice has no defenders at this point.

34 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I wouldn't doubt if the original suspension took place based upon Rice and his fiance's account of what happened, with the understanding that the matter would be re-opened if that account proved to be deceptive. The account could have been something along the lines of "Yes, we were in a fight, and while we did get physical with one another, no punches were thrown, and my fiance lost her balance, and struck her head on the handrail".

40 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Yes but the new policy that Godell implemented applies to only new cases. Under the old policy Rice was suspended in line for what he was arrested for given previous incidents along with his first-time offender status, regardless of whether there is video evidence or not.

36 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Each county court is its own world. Odds are the prosecutor does not live in your community drawing jurors from your neighbors with a trial to be overseen by specific judges under a particular state law. For all I know the marriage after the fact allows Ray Rice to assert marital immunity preventing his wife from testifying against him.

You can't believe it. I get that. I hear results in Chicago varying from surrounding counties on all sorts of stuff and it is the kind of thing that happens. There is a significant people-component to these things that is not averaged out on a nation-wide basis.

Think about that when you take a pass on your local elections for prosecutor and the judge slates.

51 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Keith Olbermann flailed and annihilated Goodell, the Ravens, and about everybody else for this. I mean, I often disagree with him, but this is not one of those times.

http://deadspin.com/keith-olbermann-on-roger-goodell-an-enabler-of-men-wh-1632150757

54 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Really?

"Mr. Casse and Mr. Newsome put the meaninglessness of their own team's financial and on-field success ahead of the safety and well-being not only of Janay Palmer, but of every woman in the country now threatened by a man who, because of how they covered for Ray Rice, is a little more more confident of he can get away with it."

"And lastly, I accuse us, all of us, executives, players, fans, reporters, of failing to draw a line in the sand when one was needed most. Any games played by Baltimore without its executives and the Commissioner having been dismissed, and without Ray Rice Being permanently banned by the National football League, must be fully boycotted by all of us. If not, we become accessories After the fact."

His blowhardiness makes my head hurt. We're all guilty!

61 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

So the owner(?) of TMZ says that tomorrow he's going to prove the NFL had access (or watched) the video.

Wonder who will have the most egg on their face if he's right?

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The standard is the standard!

64 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I'd say Goodell's gotta get clipped if that happens. One of the main responsibilities of the Commissioner of the NFL is to effectively lie on behalf of the bosses. Getting exposed in such an obvious and stupid manner really hampers the ability to fulfill that role in the future. They may wait until after the Super Bowl, after they have done a search for the next mouthpiece, but I'd say if Levin makes good on that promise, Roger's off to long term parking.

67 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Im sorry that you

1) think threads NEVER go off topic

2) are only NOw* grasping
the severity of this fiasco.

It should have been discussed from minute one on ANY site dedicated to football.

But in all seriousness, I'll join your e-police squad and call anyone who posts ANY off-topic comment that I see in a thread as "trolling"

Starting with recommendations to go to chat , RaiderJoe spelling LULZ, etc.

Since obviously you 100% enforce your ideological code on "trolling", you'll love the company, right? Oh, you don't care about *that* off topic commentary? Jeez. Wonder why.

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The standard is the standard!

69 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I'm sorry that you are ignorant of the meaning of the word "enforce".

I'm sorry that you don't read well enough to know that I said many hours ago, not "just now" that Goodell might lose his job over this and that this same reading deficiency is such that it has left you to make the false implication that I gave some indication that I believed that threads "NEVER go off-topic". I did not.

I'm sorry that your sense of proportion is such that the prospect of the owners replacing their mouthpiece is something you see as entailing "severity", as opposed to being an interesting oddity.

70 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

link to you EVER calling a "offtopic" comment (obvious 3rd world jersey/etc spammers don't count) post "trollbait"
other than my in the earlier thread today?

One IOTA of ideological consistency. I'll admit my error in signature. Prove me wrong.

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The standard is the standard!

71 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I have no idea of what you are babbling about. I'm sorry that you so significantly concerned that I used a term several hours ago that you are still yammering about it. I take it back. There; Allllllllllll Better!

87 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Well, Goodell's job is to do what the owners want even if he does not have time to get their opinion on it, to advise them what they want to do to help protect them if is a situation to get instructions from them, and in the end if things do not work out to be sacrificed to protect them. It is not to be some free-agent moral arbiter. He is their agent, not a free and independent individual.

I suspect part of the problem was the players union which is relatively combative compared to times past. Did the players' union have the tape and basically tell Goodell that they would go to the mat for Ray Rice in the face of the video?

The reason I ask is that people who have survived up to a certain point have done so for a reason, and if they fail there are often complicating factors that forced the errors that led to their downfall. I am just trying to imagine what those might have been.

77 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I'm really disappointed that, among the FO commentariat, there appears to be very limited drinking experience.

Seriously, close those laptops and live a little.

102 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

I hadn't gotten to this thread until now. First, thanks Will for trying to educate people just how stupid drunks can be and how many get injured. You don't have to be behind the wheel to be hurt by a drunk - or even be the drunk who hurts someone. Second, I'm glad I missed this because it seems like some here have decided to make up their own "facts" as to who knew what and when. I'm tired of posters stating "I heard on (fill in the source)." It's not that hard to post a link. You can either copy and paste it (it will still work if it runs to many lines) or learn some basic html and link it like this. (If a 58-year-old geography major can learn html, you can.)

104 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

From ESPN.com:
http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/11494073/nfl-says-ray-rice-video-was-sought-multiple-sources

"The source said that Rice admitted to the Ravens from the start that he was guilty of striking Janay and, for the most part, accurately described what they eventually saw on the video. But the brutality of the assault when seen on the security video made a different impression.

'His description was not too much different -- except it looks more violent when you see it,' a team source said."

107 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Yes, an unnamed source said "His description was not too much different -- except it looks more violent when you see it".

That's a big enough hole for a 65 year old Ray Rice to run through. Not too different, except more violent. I love that.

154 Re: Ravens Release Ray Rice

Is your suggestion that getting drunk makes it ok? Or that somehow under the law it relieves the accused of responsibility?

If the crime was one of 'specific intent' it may. Specific intent does not go to punching or shooting someone. That is general intent. Specific intent is intended toward a specific result of action. First degree murder is an example. Drunkenness may relieve the accused of the first degree because drunkenness prevented premeditation.

On the other hand, it is an enhancement or defining characteristic of other crimes. Driving under the influence or driving while intoxicated for example.

For Ray Rice, depending on the state law (they vary hugely in this regard), it could affect the degree of the assault charge that the prosecutor could bring.