Down
enlarge shrink
Ray Rice appeal hearing dates set
0:38 | NFL
Ray Rice appeal hearing dates set
Sunday October 19th, 2014

Former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice could be reinstated to the NFL within the next four weeks, reports Jason La Canfora of CBSSports

Rice is appealing the indefinite suspension handed to him by commissioner Roger Goodell on Sept. 8, following the release of video showing Rice punching his then-fiancée in a casino elevator in February. Goodell had originally given Rice a two-game suspension and maintains that he did not see video of the punch until it was released to the public. 

Catch up on everything you may have missed in NFL Week 7

The running back will reportedly argue that Goodell had no basis to extend his suspension from two games to an indefinite period.

La Canfora reports that an appeal hearing date has been set and a final decision is expected to come in an "expeditious manner" after the hearing. Former U.S. district judge Barbara S. Jones is hearing the appeal as a neutral, third-party arbitrator. 

The whole thing could be resolved by mid-November, and if Rice is reinstated it could allow Rice to sign with another team this season, should a team be interested.

NFL Fan Poll: Should Goodell keep his job?

According to La Canfora, several legal experts have said Rice has "an exceedingly strong case." Rice is expected to argue that he told the truth to Goodell about what happened in the elevator when he met with him over the summer, which the commissioner denies. 

Former FBI director Robert Mueller III is currently conducting an investigation into Goodell's handling of Rice's case, at the NFL's request. 

- Molly Geary

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide - from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Seth Davis, and more - delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.