New York Giants linebacker Mark Herzlich said he wouldn't welcome Ray Rice onto the team should he be reinstated.
Herzlich, the Giants' player representative for the NFL Players Association, said there's "no place" for violent offenders in the locker room and that there should be "zero tolerance" for domestic violence offenders.
"I wouldn't welcome him," Herzlich said. "I've known him before. I've known him as a good guy before. But at the same time, it's kind of an accepting defense, like 'You know what? All right.' ... There is no room for it, to be honest."
"It's disgusting. It's brutal. The fact that we as men are supposed to protect the people we love, honestly, if he loves her and she thinks that he loves her, he wouldn't be doing that."
Rice was released by the Baltimore Ravens and suspended indefinitely by the NFL after new video emerged that shows Rice punching then-fiancée, now wife, Janay Palmer in an Atlantic City casino elevator. The parameters for Rice's potential reinstatement are currently unclear.
Multiple current and former players have criticized NFL commissioner Roger Goodell for his handling of Rice. The league and Goodell have come under fire in the wake of the new video, with questions now centering on whether the league received and/or viewed the video of Rice punching Palmer before rendering the initial punishment of a two-game suspension.
Goodell has said the NFL never obtained the video, but a report emerged Wednesday that the league was sent it and confirmed receiving it. Ex-FBI director Robert Mueller III will reportedly lead an investigation into the NFL's handling of the Rice case.
- Ben Estes