Rashee Rice Suspension Projection from NFL Insider; Does New Allegation Impact Length?

Adam Schefter has discussed the latest updates regarding a likely suspension for Kansas City Chiefs WR Rashee Rice.
Jan 28, 2024; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Rashee Rice (4).
Jan 28, 2024; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Rashee Rice (4). / Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
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Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Rashee Rice has had an offseason of off-the-field issues that have put the start of his 2024 season in jeopardy. Rice is facing eight felony charges and multiple civil lawsuits in relation to his role in a multi-vehicle crash in Dallas, Texas, in late March and he was accused of assault at a nightclub in Dallas in early May. Now, Rice awaits progress from the legal process and from the NFL.

Appearing on NFL Live on Monday, ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter spoke about the latest news and what he's hearing regarding a likely Rice suspension.

"The league is certainly looking into it, and it certainly sounds like the Chiefs are bracing for a multi-game suspension for Rashee Rice, and it doesn't look like he's going to be a part of that start of the season, that opening night game against the Baltimore Ravens," Schefter said. "Again, the personal conduct policy mandates certain discipline be in place no matter what, and the facts right now are such that they are against Rashee Rice, and we'll see what the investigation turns up, but there's certainly concern within the organization, considering what has happened this offseason, considering that alleged harassment last week, the latest involvement, considering the history that he had in college as well, there's a slew of incidents here that the league is sifting through that is likely to result in a multi-game suspension, and there's a real possibility that the Chiefs know that they'll be without Rashee Rice, setting up, of course, the Hollywood Brown revenge game against the Baltimore Ravens, his former team, he signed with the Chiefs this offseason, they're gonna need him, they're gonna need Xavier Worthy, they're gonna need these other players to step up in the absence of Rashee Rice."

Schefter's mention of Rice's college history likely refers to recent reports detailing an incident from Rice's time at SMU. Nate Taylor and Jeff Howe of The Athletic reported further details.

"According to league sources, multiple teams had removed Rice from their draft boards after learning of an alleged incident he was involved in while a student at SMU," Taylor and Howe's story reads. "During the alleged incident, multiple bullets were fired into an empty car belonging to former SMU basketball player Kendric Davis during one of the school’s home games, according to league sources. Two teams gathered information that led them to conclude Rice believed Davis was involved with his girlfriend, according to league sources. The incident was never reported to SMU authorities."

The story notes that three teams told The Athletic that they took Rice off their draft boards due to character concerns, with another team downgrading Rice due to off-the-field evaluations. The story also reports that the Chiefs were aware of the alleged incident.

What does this mean for Rashee Rice?

With all due respect to Schefter, his new report is, frankly, nothing new. Schefter himself wrote that Rice was "expected to be disciplined by the NFL, resulting in at least a multi-game suspension" on April 22, long before Rice's latest incident. As I wrote at the time, "multi-game suspension" is about as vague as you could reasonably be while projecting Rice's likely suspension. Anything more than one game is a "multi-game suspension." I expect the Chiefs to have a multi-win season. It's just not particularly helpful.

On May 1, James Palmer said the Chiefs were "expecting half a season, at least," also before Rice's recent allegation. Schefter's estimate is a safe one, Palmer's is a much more noteworthy timetable but it hasn't been publicly echoed by other reporters.

Rice's alleged SMU story is unlikely to factor into the NFL's discipline, as the league historically hasn't punished players for incidents from before they joined the NFL. It may, however, put Rice's tumultuous 2024 offseason into context as the Chiefs prepare to start the year without him on the field. How many games will they lose him for? At this point, there still isn't enough information to know for sure.

Read More: Chiefs Schedule News: KC to Open 2024 Season vs. Ravens in Week 1


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Joshua Brisco

JOSHUA BRISCO

Joshua Brisco is the editor-in-chief and publisher of Arrowhead Report on SI.com, covering the Kansas City Chiefs. Follow @jbbrisco.