Ray Rice Will Maintain Heavy Workload: Fantasy Implications

August 12, 2012;Annapolis, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice (27) interacts with the crowd during training camp at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-US PRESSWIRE

Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice, who touched the ball 367 times in 2011, will maintain his heavy workload in 2012. We break down the fantasy implications.

Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice, who touched the ball 367 times in 2011, will maintain his heavy workload in 2012, according to the Baltimore Sun. Rice carried the ball 291 times a year ago and caught 76 passes out of the backfield, amassing more than 2,000 total yards and 15 touchdowns. Running backs coach Wilbert Montgomery sees no reason to lighten the load, however, saying the team will ride Rice until the wheels fall off.

Analysis: Fantasy owners who have spent a top-five draft pick on Rice have to like hearing this news. Rice's lack of competition in the backfield and presumed heavy workload are part of what makes him a rare elite option at running back this season. He received a new contract this offseason as well, so all systems should be go for Baltimore's dual-threat running back. Draft Rice in the top three of your fantasy draft with confidence.

For more on the Ravens, check out Baltimore Beat Down.

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