Just hours after Roger Goodell gave a press conference in which he said he absolutely believed NFL officials had not seen the full tape of the Ray Rice incident inside the elevator, ESPN dropped a major report claiming that the Baltimore Ravens had a complete picture of the incident along — and assumed Goodell had seen the video tape of the incident.
According to an Outside the Lines investigation, reporters "found a pattern of misinformation and misdirection employed by the Ravens and the NFL since that February night," and that league and team executives seemingly went out of their way to avoid gathering the necessary information on the case.
Reporters Don Van Natta Jr. and Kevin Van Valkenburg suggest that the Ravens worked hard to protect Rice, even ignoring a request from coach John Harbaugh to cut Rice after seeing the first video of the running back dragging his unconscious wife out of the elevator. This was also despite the fact that an employee of Ravens was describing the full incident to friends "within hours," saying the video was "really bad."
Darren Sanders, the Baltimore Ravens Director of Security, was told by an Atlantic City police officer exactly what occurred in the video by phone. Rice's attorney, Michael J. Diamondstein, had a copy of the tape as well, but the Ravens officials never asked to see it. Diamondstein specifically told Ravens president Dick Cass "It's fucking horrible" and also, "Ray knocked her the fuck out." Despite that information, team officials aggressively pushed for a lenient two-game suspension.