Rice to consider retirement once he hits 30

Rice to consider retirement once he hits 30
December 18, 2013, 3:00 pm
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Ray Rice seems to realize he’s closer to the end of his NFL career than the beginning.
 
Though just 26 years old and near the end of his sixth season, Rice said Wednesday that the he’ll consider hanging them up once he turns 30.  
 
“It’s always something to think about at the running back position,” Rice said on a conference call Wednesday. “I’ll just put it out there – my goal was to make it 10 years in the NFL. Anything after 10, if I can’t do it the way I want to, then it’s something to think about. But, I’m young. I came in the NFL at 21 years old, a young guy. So, I’m still young; I’m only going to be 27 in January. So, there’s a lot of football left to be played. With that being said, I have priorities too. You know I have a young daughter, and you’ve just got to put all that in perspective when you’re going out there week-in and week-out, especially when you get older in your career.”
 
Rice got on the subject of longevity after I asked a string of questions that began with him making it through a down year statistically (605 rushing yards, 3.1 YPC).
 
“I’ve been dealing with injuries this year,” he explained. “This has been a different year for me. Everybody plays through different things, and my numbers are what they are, but I’m doing what I can do to help my team. The injury I had this year wasn’t something that you just bounce back from and say, ‘Oh you know I had a hip…’ It is definitely very hard to play through week in and week out. So when I look at things like that, statistics, I don’t worry about things [like that]. You know, I’ve proven myself over the years, Pro Bowls and one Super Bowl. That [other] stuff really comes a dime-a-dozen. Right now I’m really focused on this year. You can’t just say – as far as being healthy, I’m healthy enough to go out there on Sundays. That’s what I’m looking forward to. The numbers don’t mean nothing. I’m worried about wins right now. I mean, everything else takes care of itself. At the end of the day, we’ve all got things to be thankful for, so I’m thankful just to be out there and be able to play through this [injury] this year and not have to tank it in.”
 
The Patriots have a plethora of Rutgers products on their team currently. Rice was asked jokingly about coming to New England when his current contract expires or if that would be almost as bad as becoming a Steeler.
 
“I mean, the business side of it . . .” he laughed. “That’s the one thing that is not fair to say because we don’t get to choose where we go. We kind of just got to do what we do. Obviously I’ve laid my foundation here in Baltimore. You know it’s a great city and it’s been great to me. But, you know who knows what the future can hold. If I can retire a Raven, that would be great. But, it all depends on the running back position too. The wear and tear of a running back, obviously it’s true. So you don’t want to be going out there and tarnishing something that you’re already doing well. I’m doing well, and that’s where it’s at.”