John Harbaugh on Ray Rice video: 'It made things a little bit different'
Ravens coach John Harbaugh addressed questions at a press conference Monday night about the release earlier in the day of Ray Rice after footage of the running back attacking his then-fiance earlier this year was made public on Monday morning.
The Ravens kicked off their season Sunday with a loss at home to the Bengals. Rice was not active for the game and was due to sit out Week 2 after being suspended by the league for his role in the attack on his fiancee, Janay Palmer (the two have since married). He was arrested, charged and indicted by a grand jury on domestic violence charges for the attack earlier this year.
TMZ released video on Monday morning of Rice punching the woman inside an elevator at an Atlantic City casino. Harbaugh and the NFL said it was the first that they had seen the footage because it had not been made available by police during the investigation. It's not immediately clear whether the league attempted to contact the casino to obtain the footage during the investigation.
On Monday night, Harbaugh said he had a quick meeting with Ravens executives earlier in the day because after seeing the footage "it made things a little bit different."
“After seeing the video this morning, we had a chance to get together with Steve, Dick, Ozzie and myself. We had a meeting — it was not a long meeting — and we came to the decision that we came to, to release Ray. That’s what we did. I had a chance to talk to Ray, along with Ozzie. ... I have nothing but hope and good will for Ray and Janay and we’ll do whatever we can going forward to help them as they go forward."
Harbaugh went on to say that his pain is for Rice and his wife as a couple:
"When someone that you care about does wrong and is faced with the consequences it is tough and it is hurtful. My pain is for both of them as a couple," Harbaugh said. "From everything talking to Ray, up until his suspension, talking with him a lot, was they were working hard and doing well. If I can help them in any way and if my wife and I can help them in any way, we'll do that."
- Marc Weinreich