AroundTheBean.com correspondent OldManH chimes in on Ray Rice’s reinstatement. Is signing a once elite, still young, but possibly declining running back worth the likely public relations backlash for a contending team in need of boosting their running game? As always, sign off on the comments section or tweet us your thoughts: @AroundTheBean @JPLime
Got the text that Ray Rice won his appeal today and can sign with an NFL team. While I support the appeal, reinstatement and Rice’s opportunity to continue his NFL career after a lengthy and ridiculous suspension by Roger Goodell, it feels Ray Rice won this battle but ultimately lost the war. The first battle for Rice will be convincing a team that he’s worth the public relations gauntlet and media circus as the season winds down. There may be suitors such as the Colts who are in desperate need of a running game to alleviate the pressure from Andrew Luck or even the Steelers who just gifted LeGarrette Blount to the Pats. The question general managers will ask themselves is “Is he worth the f’n risk.”
Maybe I’ve been clouded by most NFL team theories of devaluing the RB position or the fact Rice has declined in production the past two years. And to be fair he was injured in 2013 and split carries with Bernard Pierce. He’s only 27yrs old and a 6 yr NFL RB. I’d say he has a bit left in the tank for a formidable team looking to spell their feature back. But I think a fresh start to his career is what he needs and maybe he can extend it for a few more years and hopefully build some points with the public and fans. While the Ravens running game has not suffered this season without Rice; much credit to Justin Forsett but was this just a good move by the organization to cut ties or more than meets the eye? Somehow I feel the Ravens organization ducked a bullet and PR nightmare by Goodell taking the fire squad on this incident. Make that $44mil Roger!!
Side thought. This ruling says a lot about Roger Goodell. Not only was he scathed and in essence deemed a “liar” by a judge in his actions of the whole Rice fight night scandal, he has lost credibility to rule without bias in any situation in my opinion. The NFLPA should take this opportunity to pounce on the commissioner and owners to change the methods in which rulings and penalties against players are levied. If the NFL truly cares about transparency and the protection of “The Shield” it may wish to start fresh with a new commissioner even if its the owners with the strings on a new commissioner. How will this affect the Peterson pending appeal on Tuesday and future rulings by the commissioner and the NFL. No doubt there will be a few before the end of the season and especially in the off-season. That’s about as guaranteed as Kim K flashing her ass for a bit of attention.