Rice, of course, set -- or lowered -- the standard for violent NFL running backs almost five years earlier. The ex-Baltimore Ravens star was suspended and then released in 2014 after video showed the three-time Pro Bowler punching Janay Palmer, his then-fiancée, and dragging her unconscious out of an elevator.
In an exclusive Tuesday sit-down with "CBS This Morning" alongside Palmer, who married Rice weeks after the incident and has since had two children with him, Rice offered his perspective on Hunt, recalled his own fall from glory and confirmed he's "done with football."
"During my darkest moments," Rice said, "I used to ask myself, 'How could (Janay) even be -- want to support me? ...That's understandable. But I think what's misunderstood about us is that the friends we were before the incident. That's why, when I look at Kareem Hunt, I want to know what his life was like. I want to know what happened in life. I know Kareem has apologized."
Rice said his headlining incident followed years of using football as an unhealthy escape.
"One of the underlying issues for me was I never wanted to ask for help," he told "CBS This Morning" co-host Gayle King. "Football, for me, was my counseling. It was my therapy. It was my psychologist. It was everything."
Asked about his absence from the NFL since 2014, the year he became what King called "a poster boy for domestic violence caught in a very graphic way on tape," Rice had no complaints about his pro football career ending in what may have been his prime. Instead, he suggested that the second chance he truly needed came off the field with his wife.
"I hate that person (on the video)," Rice said. "I hate him ... Somewhere down the line everybody who's sayin', 'Does he deserve a second chance for football?' And this, that and the other -- I actually got my second chance ... And I'll be the first one to say it. I don't have to retire to tell you I'm done with football. The pressure I was under of being a star, that was the person I hated the most."
Palmer, meanwhile, reiterated that she's long since forgiven Rice for his mistakes.
"And I'm not here to force people to understand," she said. "This is somebody I've known since I was 15 years old. I knew that we had work to do, and I was willing to move forward and put in the work."