Ray Rice to Indianapolis Colts Rumors Follow Ahmad Bradshaw Injury


Nov 5, 2014; New York, NY, USA; Suspended NFL running back Ray Rice arrives with his wife, Janay Rice for his appeal hearing on his indefinite suspension from the NFL. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY

It may be a bit premature to start connecting dots about what teams might be interested in signing embattled running back Ray Rice, but it is interesting nonetheless.  After all, Rice has yet to receive word on when he might be eligible to return to the football field, or if he will be able to return at all.

Then there’s the question of whether or not a team might take a chance on the 27 year old running back and the heavy baggage he brings with him.  The NFL faced a tidal wave of public backlash like it has never seen as it clumsily navigated through the PR disaster that was the handling of Rice’s punishment.

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One would imagine that the NFL, and probably 90% of the American public are hoping that Rice goes away and never comes back.  His actions were deplorable and inexcusable, no matter how anyone tries to downplay it or spin it.

But this is sports, and the NFL is full of stories of retribution and second chances.  Michael Vick, Plaxico Burress, etc. etc.  A desperate team could still take a chance on Rice, if he is physically able to contribute.  Perhaps the bigger question is, will they take a shot on a 27 year old running back who has a lot of wear on his tires and is coming off of a terrible season?

The dot connecting has already begun, of course.  After Indianapolis Colt’s running back Ahmad Bradshaw went down Sunday night against the Patriots and left the stadium on crutches, Jason LaCanfora at CBS Sports was already playing connect the dots.

Obviously it’s fair to do so in this matter, given the Colt’s status as a real contender this season and their lack of talent at the running back position behind Bradshaw.  Trent Richardson is looking like a huge bust and waste of a first round pick at this point.  Plus, Colts head coach Chuck Pagano is familiar with Ray Rice from his stint as the Raven’s defensive coordinator.

If, and when, Rice is reinstated by the league, I still highly doubt any team will take a chance on him this season.  It’s not like Rice lit it up in 2013, and the PR hit a team would take is a tremendous distraction.  I don’t care how well they are coached or how much leadership they have in the locker room.

This late in the season, that’s not a risk that smart teams tend to take.  If Ray Rice was still an elite running back, it might seem more feasible.  Or if he hadn’t rocked the NFL with one of the biggest scandals in its history.  I still believe that Rice’s career is most likely over, or at the very least his 2014 season.