Chiefs receiver Rashee Rice says he’s trying to ‘mature’ and ‘grow’ after offseason incidents

Contributing writer

Kansas City Chiefs receiver Rashee Rice spoke publicly on Saturday for the first time during a turbulent offseason of legal troubles that has him facing a likely suspension by the NFL.

In April, Rice was arrested for his involvement in a multi-car crash while racing a Lamborghini in northeast Dallas. He currently faces eight felony charges related to the crash and a $1 million lawsuit from two people who suffered injuries in the accident.

The second-year receiver was also suspected of assaulting a photographer at a Dallas nightclub in May. However, Dallas police confirmed that the accuser signed “an affidavit of non-prosecution” and will no longer pursue charges.

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Rice, 24, talked to reporters during a youth football camp in Kansas City, where he was appearing with fellow Chiefs receivers Marquise “Hollywood” BrownSkyy Moorerookie Xavier Worthy and the newly re-signed Mecole Hardman. Rice said he is attempting to improve as a person away from football.

“I’ve learned so much from that,” Rice said. “All I can do is mature and continue to grow from that. This is a step in a better direction for me.”

Despite the off-field incidents, Rice has participated in offseason practices and OTAs with the Chiefs, who have stated that they prefer to let the legal process work itself out before making a decision on the receiver’s status. Getting support from teammates has been helpful.

“Accidents and stuff like that happen,” he added, “but all you can do is move forward and walk around being the same person, try to be positive so that everybody can feel your love and your great energy.”

Rice is coming off an impressive rookie season during which he caught 79 passes for 938 yards and seven touchdowns. During the Chiefs’ run to a second consecutive Super Bowl championship, Rice set a postseason record for rookie receivers with 26 receptions.