Former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice has won his appeal of an indefinite suspension and has been reinstated to the NFL.
Rice is now eligible to sign with any NFL team.
Running back Ray Rice is eligible to sign with any NFL team after winning an appeal of his indefinite suspension.
An NFL spokesman, when asked by ESPN’s Andrew Brandt if the league would pursue any further action against Rice, said: “We, of course, accept the ruling as binding.”
Rice was suspended indefinitely Sept. 8 for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy after a video of him hitting his then-fiancée was released publicly. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell originally had suspended the running back for two games.
A source who has read the decision told ESPN investigative reporter Don Van Natta Jr. that U.S. District Judge Barbara S. Jones, who heard Rice’s appeal earlier this month, concluded Rice did not lie or mislead the NFL.
Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome testified under oath Nov. 6 in the appeal hearing that he heard the former Baltimore running back tell Goodell during his June 16 disciplinary hearing that he had hit his then-fiancée in a casino hotel elevator, sources told “Outside the Lines.”
Rice also testified, as did his wife, Janay. Details of what Rice and his wife testified to Nov. 6 and what Goodell said Nov. 5 were not released to ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” because of a gag order that Jones imposed. But sources said Newsome backed Rice’s previous accounts of what he told Goodell. Goodell spent the majority of his time testifying under cross-examination by outside union attorney Jeffrey Kessler, sources said.
Rice, 27, is a three-time Pro Bowler and helped the Ravens win Super Bowl XLVII. He rushed for 6,180 yards and 37 touchdowns in six seasons with Baltimore.
Ravens receiver Torrey Smith tweeted his support of his former teammate.