The co-founders of A Call To Men, an organization that encourages men to end violence against women, believe that former Ravens running back Ray Rice should be given a second chance by an NFL team. Rice has been working out and sending videos to teams, he has not played since being released from the Ravens.
Tony Porter and Ted Bunch, co-founders of A Call To Men, who have both worked with Rice since the incident that led to his suspension and release, think he deserves a second opportunity. “We have been around a lot of abusive men, but our experience with Ray has been tremendously positive,” Porter said this past weekend. “We feel strongly about him having the opportunity of having a second chance. He’s deserving of it.”
Porter and Bunch say this because they have worked with Rice since last year and see change in him. The two have seen the former Ravens running back speak at his alma mater, Rutgers, and help out athletes at his old high school. He has talked to them about learning from mistakes and changing.
Numbers and Interest
They say he wants his daughter, to remember him for all the good things he did and not the incident in the elevator, which led to the league changing the rules and giving him a bigger suspension. “He’s held himself accountable,” Bunch said. “He is saying everything that you would want him to say and doing everything that you would want him to do. So why wouldn’t he deserve another chance? His work in the area of educating young men is more important than him getting back on the field. He knows that and has said that to us. He is seeing the bigger picture. He has a desire to compete again, but also to make a difference in the world. This is what mistakes should be about: learning from them and teaching others. We’ve been in front of a lot of batterers. He is as transparent as I’ve seen, and as sincere as I’ve seen.”
Rice has been waiting for a second chance and some teams have discussed signing him. The season before the incident, he had career lows, which is probably the biggest reason teams are staying away. Just a few years ago, Rice was putting up huge numbers for the Ravens and was considered a top 5 running back. Rice played through an injury the season before the incident and one Ravens executive said he was back to his normal self later that year. The team didn’t get to see that because they released him after the video of the incident was revealed.
Now that Rice has spent time recovering from his injury and has made changes, Porter believes teams should give him a call. “We’ll catch flak for this,” Porter said. “A lot of people think we should kick him to the curb and his name should be mud forever. But how great would it be if everyone who made a mistake made it their mission to make sure a million people don’t make the same mistake? To use the influence that he has, what a great way to correct that wrong. And that’s what Ray has committed himself to doing. His intentions are real, his heart is pure, and we’re going to help him to move forward so he can have a positive impact on the next generation of manhood.”
Rice is 28, which is two or three years away from when running backs start declining, he is a one time Super Bowl Champion with three Pro Bowl selections. Do you think he’ll play in the NFL again? Which team should give him a try?