Should the Chiefs Cut Rashee Rice?

Rashee Rice faces eight criminal charges for his involvement in a six-vehicle crash in Dallas
Rashee Rice faces eight criminal charges for his involvement in a six-vehicle crash in Dallas / Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

We're still waiting for more details in the ongoing legal saga involving Chiefs' WR Rashee Rice following the six-vehicle car crash he helped cause with a pair of vehicles he was responsible for.

Rice faces eight criminal charges and while neither the Chiefs nor the NFL have made official comments, Toriano Porter of the Kansas City Star published an article on Saturday arguing that Rice should be cut.

It creates an interesting conversation on the morality of professional sports, as Rice looks like a rising star for the two-time defending Super Bowl champions.

No, the Chiefs Should Not Cut Rashee Rice

I understand where Porter is coming from and respect his position, though I firmly disagree that Rice should be cut for a variety of reasons. There's too much conjecture involved and we're far too early in the process to make those kinds of grand declarations.

As Porter writes, "If Rice is guilty of the crimes he’s accused of committing — he’s already admitted involvement in a six-vehicle wreck on a Dallas highway last month — I don’t see how he can remain on the team. Not only did Rice walk away from the scene of the accident, a small amount of marijuana was among the items found in the Lamborghini sports utility vehicle he crashed."

The police cannot prove that the marijuana belonged to Rice, and it was never even mentioned in the charges. Unless Rice was driving under the influence, I don't think that detail matters to the Chiefs and it seemingly doesn't to the police.

"If those actions weren’t egregious enough, a Chiefs playbook was also left behind," continues Porter. "Not only did Rice show disregard for public safety...his blatant disregard for important team documents should be a fireable offense."

This is where the context and morality of professional sports come into play. Rice had a spectacular rookie campaign, catching 79 passes for 938 yards and seven TDs. I firmly believe that Rice will face some kind of punishment from the Chiefs, but cutting him would be a vast overreaction based on precedent and the information that we have now.

If Rice were a practice squad player or a third-string receiver, perhaps the organization would extend him less leniency. That's not the reality, though. Exceptional performers get a longer leash and we've seen numerous examples of that not only in Kansas City but across the rest of the NFL as well.

Sure, Reid is probably furious that the playbook was left behind, but that's a secondary point to the learning experience that Rice now has. Porter points out that Rice is only 23 years old and that's important. He doesn't have a history of this behavior and is cooperating fully with the investigation, accepting responsibility for his mistakes and apologizing to the victims.

The Chiefs are in the business of winning and Rice helps them accomplish that goal. If Kansas City cut Rice today, I'd guess the 31 other NFL teams would all try to acquire him. It might be an ugly truth, but NFL teams are in the business of winning with morality as a secondary motive. Especially considering the legal process is still ongoing, it's far too early to call for Rice's dismissal from the team.

It's unfair to Rice to suggest such a drastic measure this early in the investigation. Perhaps new information will emerge that changes things, but I vehemently disagree with the notion of cutting him to prove a point.

Rice should, and likely will, face some sort of punishment from both the law and the Chiefs. He made a mistake that could've been disastrous and should pay for that. However, he should not be cut based on the information we have now.

Based on the precedent both the Chiefs and NFL have set over the years, I tend to think Brett Veach, Andy Reid and the rest of the team's brass will agree.

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