Last week, NFL Network analyst Donovan McNabb said he thought Ray Rice would take a step back in 2013. McNabb went on to claim that Rice has an issue with fumbling the football, "Ray Rice to me, he fumbled the football entirely too much last year. Ray Rice we know is a Pro Bowler and can make big plays for you, but he has a tendency of fumbling the ball entirely too much. So expect Bernard Pierce to really step up and be that guy."
There has been a lot of speculation this offseason that 2nd-year tailback Bernard Pierce will see an increased role in the Ravens' offense this season, but I find it ludicrous to think that Pierce will take the majority or Rice's workload, especially because of "fumbling problems". Rice did, in fact, fumble the football three times in last year's playoff run, including two fumbles in the wild card round against Indianapolis. I, however, believe it was just a string of bad luck for Rice and not any sign of a real fumbling issue.
Rice only fumbled the ball once last year during the regular season, which is quite impressive if you consider he gets more touches than most running backs in the league. Rice has only seven fumbles in his five-year career and has never fumbled more than three times in a season, he had three fumbles in his first season as the Ravens' feature back in 2009. Rice also went the entire 2010 season without a single fumble.
My advice to Donovan McNabb, do a little research before you start making ridiculous claims about one of the league's top running backs having a fumbling problem. Yes, Rice had a bad stretch in the playoffs last year where he gave the ball away three times, but if you look at his career as a whole, he is far from a fumbler. Ray Rice is 26 years old and is still in the prime of his career, I hardly believe he will take a step back in 2013.