Ray Rice: “Our One Bad Night Just Happened To Be On Video” (VIDEO)
Ray Rice opened up to Matt Lauer on Tuesday’s “Today Show” about his domestic violence scandal, his future career and why he didn’t apologize to his wife Janay at their first press conference following the assault. The former NFL star told Lauer that Janay “can do no wrong” and that he takes “full responsibility” for his actions.
The Rices immediately sought counseling after the running back punched her in the face and knocked her unconscious in an Atlantic City elevator earlier this year. Ray, who was joined by his wife and her parents Candy and Joe Palmer on the “Today Show,” said that his counselor ripped him apart in order to build him back together. “There are just so many things you don’t know about yourself,” he said of his therapy.
When discussing whether he still has a future in football, Rice explained that a new team and set of fans would have to be “willing to look deeper” into who he is. “Me and my wife had one bad night, and I took full responsibility for it,” he said. “And one thing about my punishment and everything going along with anything that happened is that I’ve accepted it. I went fully forward with it. I never complained, or I never did anything like that.” He added, “I took full responsibility for everything that I did, and the only thing I can hope for and wish for is a second chance.”
Ray admitted that he understood why people were upset that he didn’t apologize to Janay during their joint press conference in September. “The reason why that press conference was the way it was, was because we were still under legal situations,” he explained to Lauer. “So there wasn’t much that could be said, but I’ll be honest, we were nervous, I was nervous, and that was the first time we were available to speak. And I made a horrendous mistake not apologizing to my wife.” He noted that both he and Janay were “given what to speak about,” adding, “It wasn’t truly coming from us.”
The athlete acknowledged that Janay initially apologized in order to help him and his career, and he appreciates what she had done. “This is something, you know, as a man you have to own and, we’re horribly sorry, and I’m horribly sorry for everything that I have to put my family through,” he said. “I still got to live every day, go take my daughter to school. She’s going to grow up and the way the Internet works now she’s going to Google her father’s name and the first thing that’s going to come up is, you know what’s going to come up.” He continued, “The reality of it and that’s what I’m more worried about fixing is that I want my wife, my daughter, my family – we all just want our lives back.”
Ray added, “I realize football was one thing, but now I realize that the amount of people we’ve affected, the amount of families we’ve affected, that, you know, domestic violence is a real issue in society. We could take our one bad night, it just happened to be on video, but we are truly sorry to the people that are really going through it. You know, it’s a real problem. And I know when the time is right, I know my wife wants to help, I know I want to help.”
As for those who say that Janay only stayed with him because he was a famous football player, Ray said, “I knew my wife before I had anything. We both know where we came from. And just to be honest with you, she’s very independent. My wife can survive in this world without me. She could survive in this world, in society, without me. She could’ve done it on her own.” He added, “The one thing I want people to understand is that she sacrificed her well-being for me. And now the role’s a little bit reversed. I would sacrifice my well-being for her.” Check out the video below, and tell us what you think. Note: Video no longer available.