As a rookie, Bernard Pierce showed a lot of promise. He ran for 532 yards and one touchdown in 2012 with 4.9 yards per carry. He had huge games against the Giants and Colts, running for over 100 yards against each. It looked like he and Ray Rice would form the NFLs best 1-2 punch at running back.
But 2013 came along and Pierce fell short as the Ravens run game as a whole stagnated.
Then 2014 came along, and with Ray Rice's suspension and eventual release, Pierce had not only the potential to finally be the Ravens starting running back, but also potentially be a star in the NFL. Gary Kubiak's system had turned countless no-names into stars and Pierce had drawn comparisons to Arian Foster in Houston.
He would fall short, as a fumble got him benched in Week 1. While he had a solid performance in Week 2, injuries made him miss weeks 3 and 4, which would cause him to tumble down to third on the depth chart behind Justin Forsett and rookie Lorenzo Taliaferro. Pierce fell to the point where he was made a healthy scratch in Week 8 vs. the Bengals and to where undrafted rookie Fitzgerald Toussaint got carries over him after Taliaferro went on injured reserve in Week 15.
Coming into the 2015 offseason Pierce's roster spot was looking tenuous already. He was unable to cash in on the opportunity of a lifetime and instead fell beneath two rookies and a journeyman on the depth chart.
Then in the early morning following St. Patricks Day, Pierce got arrested for a DUI, and almost prophetically predicted that he would be released by the Ravens for this — which is one of the two mind-boggling parts of the story.
Pierce knew that getting busted for this would result in him losing his already tenuous roster spot and did it anyway, on a night where cops would be looking for drunk drivers. Also the NFLPA entered into a partnership with Uber in 2013 and they will give NFL players a ride for free. This entire story was preventable and that's what makes this story of wasted talent especially unfortunate.