The Indianapolis Colts and New Orleans Saints are among at least four teams interested in running back Ray Rice, according to ESPN.
Rice was reinstated last week after being suspended early in the season and the Baltimore Ravens released him because of a domestic violence case.
Multiple league sources told ESPN that the Colts and Saints have expressed interest in Rice, but are not likely to pursue him. The sources would not identify the other teams interested in Rice.
It is also unlikely that Rice, who turns 28 in January, will play this season. He averaged just 3.1 yards per carry in 2013 and has not played since training camp. However, Rice is believed to be in excellent physical shape.
A contending team with injuries at running back is expected to be the most typical one that would sign Rice.
One AFC running backs coach said Rice is a good player but there are questions about how fast he could pick up a team’s offense and what kind of football shape he is in.
“Some guys learn faster than others. They just do,” the coach said. “I don’t know what kind of shape he’s in. There are a bunch of different things. He’s going to have to get into shape, clearly because he hasn’t been hitting this year. You would think there would be some carryover … but he is a good player.”
The coach also wondered how Rice would fit into a locker room after his highly-publicized case in which video showed him punching his then-fiancee in the face and then dragging her unconscious body out of an elevator.
“I don’t know on that one,” he said. “It’s a different thing. It was so violent, such a volatile conversation earlier, I don’t know what guys in the locker room would think about this. I really don’t. We don’t interact with them like that. I’m not in those conversations with them about how they feel about issues like that. I don’t know, I’d be speaking out of turn probably on that one.”
SOURCE: Sports Xchange
via Chicago Tribune