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Baltimore Ravens plan to honor domestic abuser Ray Rice prior to Sunday's game
Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Baltimore Ravens plan to honor domestic abuser Ray Rice prior to Sunday's game

The Baltimore Ravens drew harsh criticism from across the political spectrum after they announced that they would honor former running back Ray Rice prior to Sunday's pivotal game against the Miami Dolphins.

In an announcement on the team's website, the Ravens announced that the team would recognize Rice as the team's "Legend of the Game" and lauded his accomplishments as a player, which included topping 1,000 yards in four straight seasons with the team. The announcement called Rice "one of the team's most dynamic running backs in franchise history."

The announcement also acknowledged the reason for the end of Rice's NFL career, which was the release of a 2014 video showing him brutally punching his now-wife Janay in the face in an Atlantic City hotel, and then dragging her apparently unconscious body down the hall. As the announcement charitably puts it, the incident "put him in the center of a national conversation about domestic violence."

According to the announcement, however, the organization is honoring Rice not only for his playing accomplishments but also for "the redemption he has worked towards. Out of the public eye, Rice has been working on himself, his relationship, and within the community."

Infamous ESPN analyst Jemele Hill also stood up for Rice on X, formerly known as Twitter, claiming that Rice has "put in the work" to redeem himself after the ugly incident, and that he is a "good person who had a horrific moment."

Hill did, however, find reason to criticize the Ravens for not signing Colin Kaepernick.

The Ravens' claim to be honoring Rice only as a result of his work to rehabilitate himself perhaps rings a bit hollow to many in light of the fact that the Ravens, including coach John Harbaugh, defended Rice immediately after the video became public and before he put in any of the alleged work referenced by Hill and the team. Back in 2014 after the incident became public, Harbaugh called Rice "a heck of a guy." When offered an opportunity to walk back those comments after the brutal video surface, Harbaugh pointedly declined and stood by his original statement, although he did acknowledge that the brutality of the video "made it a little different."

Others were not so willing to forgive Rice as Hill.

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Leon Wolf

Leon Wolf

Managing Editor, News

Leon Wolf is the managing news editor for Blaze News. Previously, he worked as managing editor for RedState, as an in-house compliance attorney for several Super PACs, as a white-collar criminal defense attorney, and in communications for several Republican campaigns. You can reach him at lwolf@blazemedia.com.
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