Former Ravens star Ray Rice is back in football this week, even if it's to the extent of coaching running backs in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl in California.
But because Rice is back in football for the time being, he has the platform, again, to offer his usual mea culpas for his 2014 domestic-violence incident and share his hope that some NFL team takes a chance on a 28-year-old running back.
By now, Rice is so well coached, his apologies so well rehearsed, that his interviews offer little we haven't already heard. But in his interview Wednesday with ESPN's Quint Kessenich, he did sound somewhat surprised that his quest to return to professional football has taken this long.
"I'm still hopeful," he said. "It's never over till it's over. I'm not ready to give it up. My second chance, it might take a little longer than I expected, but you know what? I know I still have a lot of game left. I'm not worried about that part of it."
Rice added that he would be honest and exhaustive with the college players about the assault on his then-fiancee, Janay Palmer, in an Atlantic City, N.J., casino elevator in February 2014, the recording of which led to his release from the Ravens and NFL suspension.
"I'm here to help these kids," he said. "I'm here to give them every bit of my life experiences and to help them out with decision-making. Obviously, we know the reason why I haven't played, but I want to help these guys understand the severity of my decision so they never go out there and make that mistake."