Ray Rice and his wife met with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell today at the league’s New York headquarters, one of the final steps for the embattled running back in dealing with his February offseason arrest before the start of the 2014 season.
Two sources with knowledge of the situation confirmed the meeting, which has been expected as Rice faces discipline under the NFL’s personal conduct policy stemming from an aggravated assault charge for allegedly striking his then-fiancee, Janay Palmer, during an altercation in the elevator of an Atlantic City casino.
It’s unclear how quickly Goodell will rule on Rice’s suspension. He traditionally meets with any player facing discipline before making a decision, which is the reason Rice was in New York today.
The Ravens’ three-day mandatory minicamp starts Tuesday at the Under Armour Performance Center. Rice, 27, has taken part in the Ravens’ various offseason minicamps and is required to be in attendance this week.
The expectation is that Rice, who previously had a clean record, will get a multi-game suspension. The Ravens prepared for his expected early-season absence by signing veteran running back Justin Forsett and drafting back Lorenzo Taliaferro in the fourth round of this year's NFL draft. Bernard Pierce, Rice’s backup the past two seasons, is also slightly ahead of schedule in his return from offseason shoulder surgery, according to head coach John Harbaugh.
Rice, who was arrested on Feb. 15 and ultimately indicted on a felony aggravated assault charge, was accepted in a pretrial intervention program last month that would allow him to avoid any jail time and could lead to the charge being eliminated from his record.
He and Palmer, who was initially given a misdemeanor assault charge though that was dropped, married just a couple of days after Rice was indicted.
The two appeared in a highly-scrutinized news conference May 24 at the team facility in which Rice apologized to his family and fans, but received much criticism for not publicly apologizing to his wife.
“There were a lot of tears shed, but me and Janay can truly say that we’re in a better place,” Rice said. “Hopefully, one day I’ll gain back everyone’s trust to let you all know that we’re still the same people, and I’m still the same person. I really treat my job as a very special job, and I failed miserably. But I wouldn’t call myself a failure, because I’m working my way back up.”
The New York Post first reported Rice was in New York to meet with Goodell.
Baltimore Sun reporter Aaron Wilson contributed to this article