More Gutless; Ray Rice or Roger Goodell?


photo via USA Today

Ray Rice plays professional football in the NFL for the Baltimore Ravens. For the 2012 and 2013 seasons, he earned $25,000,000 for his ability to run with a football. Ray Rice is 5’8” tall. He weighs 212 lbs. He squats over 500 lbs and can bench press 405 lbs. On February 15th, he and his then fiancée (now wife) got onto an Atlantic City casino elevator. When the elevator came to a stop, he dragged her unconscious body out of the elevator, and left her on the hotel floor.

Yes, he beat his wife unconscious during the trip between floors.

A heinous, cowardly act.

The NFL commissioner, Roger Goodell, had the opportunity to take a stand, to state unequivocally that the NFL is opposed to violence against women. Given that chance, Roger Goodell completely, utterly, and mind-bendingly blew the call.

Goodell gave Rice a two game suspension.

Two games.

He beat another human unconscious. A woman. His fiancée.

Two games.

I am a teacher. Let’s imagine I beat my wife senseless on October 1. What is the likelihood that my school district welcomes me back on October 15?

Major League Baseball’s Cameron Maybin was recently suspended 25 games (approximately the same percentage of the season as Rice) for amphetamine use. I am opposed to the use of PEDs, but something tells me that taking an Adderall to improve one’s concentration at the plate is not as abhorrent as punching out your wife in an elevator, dragging her into the hall, and leaving her in a heap in the hotel hallway.

While at OSU, Seattle Seahawks QB Terrelle Pryor accepted, among other incentives, free groceries and tattoos. He was suspended by the NFL for 5 games. Goodell upheld this suspension upon appeal because the “integrity of the draft process” was at stake. Yes, Goodell feels the draft is more than twice as important as beating the crap out of a woman.

Cleveland Browns wide-out Josh Gordon fired up a doobie, and had the bad luck to be chosen for a drug test days later. Josh Gordon has been suspended for the season. Incredible, isn’t it? Smoke a joint and you’re gone for the year. Beat your wife senseless, you are gone for two games.

Michael Vick was involved for five years with an interstate dog fighting ring. He served 21 months in prison. Upon his release, he was suspended from play for four games.

Four games.

The message sent by the NFL and Roger Goodell is clear.

Dogs are twice as valuable as women.


Editor’s Note:

This post was used as the basis for our #DadsRT Twitter chat on Wednesday evening. The chat, hosted by David Stanley and John Taylor, was an engaging conversation delving deep into the topic of sports heroes and other celebrities as role models for our children. Go to Twitter and search #DadsRT to see the questions and responses from the chat. From there you can favorite, retweet, or reply to keep the conversation going.



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About David Stanley

Teacher & science guy, writer, musician, coach, skier and bike racer, I am interested… in everything; your story, food & spirits and music and everything in the natural world, spirit & sport. My son is 22 and still needs his Dad. I am 56 and so do I.
I blog on life and death, cancer and sports, kids and education at

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