Photo: Andy Lyons/Getty Images.
The Baltimore Ravens have ended Ray Rice's contract. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell also suspended Rice indefinitely. The decisions come after new footage emerged of the Ravens running back punching his wife in an elevator. Though the NFL initially suspended Rice for just two games based on external elevator video, the new recording shows the intensity of his attack.
Goodell sent a letter to team owners last Thursday detailing new NFL policies in the treatment of domestic-violence cases. According to the memo, players who commit acts of domestic violence will be subject to a six-game suspension for a first offense. A repeat offense will result in a lifetime ban from the sport. Though, a repeat offender would be allowed to apply for reinstatement after one year.
A portion of the letter reads:
“At times… and despite our best efforts, we fall short of our goals. We clearly did so in response to a recent incident of domestic violence. We allowed our standards to fall below where they should be and lost an important opportunity to emphasize our strong stance on a critical issue and the effective programs we have in place. My disciplinary decision led the public to question our sincerity, our commitment, and whether we understood the toll that domestic violence inflicts on so many families. I take responsibility both for the decision and for ensuring that our actions in the future properly reflect our values. I didn’t get it right. Simply put, we have to do better. And we will.”
This decision will likely be met with mixed responses. Some will say Rice's personal life shouldn't have any influence on his professional career. Others will criticize the NFL for not being stricter with Rice in the first place. What matters now, though, is the league is taking real action to create a higher set of standards for men who are watched by millions of families every Sunday. (Washington Post)