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Bobby Rainey Shines Again, Awaits Fate

Posted Aug 29, 2013

The second-year running back had 13 carries for 39 yards and two scores. Is it enough?

Bobby Rainey did it on the field again, just like he did last preseason.

The short-in-stature running back was one of the most impressive and exciting performers.

He scored two touchdowns in Thursday night's final preseason game in St. Louis. The first came on sheer determination as he plowed forward after being stopped twice at the goal line. The second came on an impressive tackle-breaking, 8-yard scamper.

But is it all enough to make the 53-man roster?

“I have no regrets,” Rainey said. “I feel like I left everything out on the field and did what I was supposed to do. I control what I can control, and wait and see what happens.”

Rainey finished this preseason with 23 carries for 89 yards and two touchdowns. He outplayed his competition, Anthony Allen and Delone Carter, in their final game. Allen had five carries for two yards and fumbled on the 1-yard line. Carter had eight carries for just one yard.

But in Rainey’s mind, his work at running back won’t earn him a roster spot. The Ravens already have a running back in a similar mold to Rainey, and he’s a Pro Bowler named Ray Rice. Baltimore has a standout backup in Bernard Pierce too.

The third running back is primarily used on special teams. Last year, Allen carved out a role on special teams coverage units and paved the way for Pro Bowl returner Jacoby Jones.

Rainey is a special teams returner. On Thursday night, he had two kickoff returns for an average of 25 yards and two punt returns for an average of 13 yards.

“That was my mindset going into the game: special teams,” Rainey said. “Offensively, everything will take care of itself. I think I did pretty good on special teams.”

Now the decision will fall to Head Coach John Harbaugh and the Ravens front office. They’ve seen Rainey perform well before.

During the preseason last year, Rainey ran 23 times for 55 yards and made 14 catches for 163 yards and two touchdowns. He made one of the strongest impressions of any player in the preseason games.

Rainey made the 53-man roster coming out of the preseason. But that’s not always the final verdict, as rosters typically still have some wiggle room.

Rainey was waived just more than a week later, and the previously-cut Allen was brought back. Rainey was re-signed to the practice squad, where he spent about a month, before being called back up. He finished on injured reserve with a knee injury.

“Bobby’s a good player,” Harbaugh said. “Bobby has proven every time that he’s played that he’s a good player.”

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