Ray Rice stopped just short of the line between confident and cockiness. In doing so he stole some media attention for himself from Richard Sherman, who has had a monopoly on Super Bowl-related media since his post game rant in San Francisco for the NFC Championship. The running back made waves earlier this morning after his boisterous appearance on Comcast Sportsnet, in which he guaranteed another ring for himself and the Ravens. The Ravens are the league’s defending champions but missed out on this year’s playoffs when San Diego clinched the tiebreaker.
“I’m guaranteeing that we’ll be back,” said Rice. “We don’t have complacent guys. None of us are happy with what happened last year. None of Us. But we are going to add pieces. And you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to see what we’ve added in coaching. That’s going to help put it all together”
Normally I’m a skeptic when it comes to players guaranteeing wins or championships, I prefer when players keep their mouths quiet. Predicting a win builds hype but they should try building it by focusing on their sport. That being said, there is no peace without chaos and every hero has its villain.
I actually respect Rice’s confidence. I think he has a strong sense of self-awareness and a heavily underestimated level of talent. While he didn’t do as well this season, you could argue he was a victim of circumstance as his defense lost a bevy of starters and Rice battled injuries for most of the season. GM Ozzie Newsome has proven that he can make strong acquisitions that will positively impact the team’s on field results. That combination plus the hiring of Gary Kubiak who has had offensive success before should make any running back feel confident in their chances. They didn’t get the opportunity to play their way to New York, but Baltimore will expect to see its black and purple soldiers in Arizona come 2015. Rice is gonna face a lot of heat, let’s just hope he doesn’t get fried.