Former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice apologized on Friday for the "horrible mistake" he made, referring to the domestic violence incident nearly a year ago that got him cut from his team.
In a statement to the Baltimore Sun, Rice thanked the city of Baltimore and the Ravens, hinting at plans to leave Maryland and return to New York.
Rice was terminated from the Ravens and indefinitely suspended by the NFL when TMZ released a video of him knocking out his then-fiancée Janay Rice in an Atlantic City casino elevator. The incident occurred on Feb. 15, 2014.
The controversy triggered a public outcry against the NFL's handling of domestic violence cases.
On Friday, Rice said, "There is no excuse for domestic violence, and I apologize for the horrible mistake I made." He also thanked the city of Baltimore for "all the love and support you've shown my family and I." Rice said he was sorry for letting down all the kids who looked up to him.
He was reinstated as an NFL player in November and is now a free agent.
Dear Baltimore,This is not a farewell or goodbye. The last seven years that my family and I have spent in Baltimore have by far been the best of our lives. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you all for the love and support you've shown my family and I throughout my football career. We'll always be grateful for the love we've received from all of our fans and supporters, and for winning a Super Bowl. To all the kids who looked up to me, I'm truly sorry for letting you down, but I hope it's helped you learn that one bad decision can turn your dream into a nightmare. There is no excuse for domestic violence, and I apologize for the horrible mistake I made. I hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me, and I hope to make a positive difference in people's lives by raising awareness of this issue. Thank you, Baltimore Ravens, for all you have done for my family and I. I'm very grateful to Steve Bisciotti, Ozzie Newsome, John Harbaugh, and everyone at 1 Winning Drive. I love you all very much, and I'll always be proud to say I played for the Baltimore Ravens.Thank you.-- Ray Rice