Despite a felony charge of aggravated assault, a disturbing video of Rice dragging the (at least mostly) unconscious body of his fiancee (now wife) out of an elevator, and the reported existence of a video showing the alleged punch that allegedly rendered her (at least mostly) unconscious, the Baltimore Ravens have supported running back Ray Rice.
They’ve got 25 million reasons to do so.
The contract Rice signed in July 2012 paid out $24 million by March 2013, with another $1 million in base salary last season. That’s $25 million already given to Rice in two seasons, with only $10 million remaining in base salary over the next three years.
If the cash flow had been flipped, with $10 million paid over two years and $25 million in non-guaranteed pay remaining, it would be a lot easier to take a stand based on principle with Rice, especially in light of his performance in 2013. With $25 million already in Rice’s pockets, the Ravens would be unwise to send Rice packing — especially since cutting Rice would also result in a waiver of their ability to recollect a portion of the $9 million in unearned signing bonus money, if Rice ultimately is jailed or suspended, or both.