Ray Rice is speaking out about his life two years after his NFL career was cut short due to a video that showed him punching his now-wife Janay in the face at an Atlantic City hotel.
The former football star told NBC 4 he is still hoping to play once more in the league, but his biggest priority these days are his young son and daughter.
‘It was the worst decision of my life, and I’m going to pay that consequence for the rest of my life,’ said Rice, 29, of his brutal attack on his wife.
‘I have two kids, who I now have to raise my son to grow up to be a man but I also have to protect my daughter from myself, a guy that could potentially be like me in my worst moments.’
Rice has a 4-year-old daughter Rayven and a newborn son
He also said that he wanted his story to be told and the details of his past shared in hopes that it could help others.
Another big focus in Rice’s life these days is self-improvement.
‘I have to make a decision every day that I’m going to be better than I was on tape,’ explained Rice, who now lives in Connecticut.
That is part of the reason he did the interview, which helped to promote the domestic violence awareness project Safe at Home.
‘Domestic violence is a real issue,’ said Rice.
‘It is a real issue. It happens every 12 seconds as we speak. But if you think about it, the conversation wasn’t really being had the way it is now because of my video. If I can explain it to young men my worst decision I know that I can save someone.’
Rice’s suspension from the league was quick after the video of him punching Janay was posted on TMZ.
There was some debate however over how much the NFL and Commissioner Roger Goodell knew of the situation prior to that September announcement, with one anonymous New Jersey law enforcement official saying he personally sent a tape of the incident to an NFL executive in April.
Multiple sources close to Rice also backed up the story that the athlete was honest and upfront about the events that took place in that elevator when he met with Goodell three months prior to his suspension June.
Furthermore, under Article 46, Section 4 of the NFL collective bargaining agreement, it states: ‘The Commissioner and a Club will not both discipline a player for the same act or conduct. The Commissioner’s disciplinary action will preclude or supersede disciplinary action by any Club for the same act or conduct.’
Prior to his suspension by the NFL, Rice had his five-year, $35 million contract with the Baltimore Ravens terminated, losing $3.529 million in salary for the season.
That money was later given back to him after a judge ruled in his favor during an appeal of his case, saying he was also eligible to compete in the NFL again.
No team has brought him on however since that ruling,m which came also two years ago.
Now he just wants one more chance to compete, and pass on some wisdom from his experiences.
‘Winning is big,’ said Rice.
‘I take that and I cherish it, but if I played and never got another Super Bowl but I helped save some men in the locker room, then I’m a champion.’
He also said: ‘I’m not going to say I don’t miss the game. I do miss the game. The moments I miss are camaraderie with teammates.
‘But everything I do I want to be genuine, now. I don’t want to use this interview or anything like that to get back to playing.’
Source: Daily Mail UK