Even Ray Rice is aware he recently completed his worst season as an NFL running back.
Though his lowest yardage output was as a rookie, he served primarily in a backup role. In 2013, playing in 15 of Baltimore's 16 games as a starter, Rice finished with 660 yards and four touchdowns. He averaged a career-low 3.1 yards per carry.
Early in the season against Cleveland, Rice went down with a hip injury that forced him to miss the Week 3 contest against Houston. He came back the following week and proclaimed he was fine, though it was clear he was battling the injury all year.
Now, in an interview with FOX Sports' Ross Jones, Rice admitted he's having second thoughts about returning so soon.
"I played through an injury and I probably should have thought twice about it, but I'm glad I was able to push through the season and not have any surgical procedures," Rice said. "One thing I know my body needed was rest, and we had a tough turnaround, and we didn't do what we wanted to this year, but I'm positive that things are looking better for next year already. We'll get this thing rolling again."
One concern is that Rice played the season at 216 pounds, as mentioned in a recent interview WNST had with John Harbaugh on Radio Row during Super Bowl Week.
Rice will most likely look to trim the weight to get back to a lighter number so that he can regain the Pro Bowl form many in Baltimore were accustomed to seeing.