Ex-Raven Raheem Mostert Persevered to Reach Super Bowl


If you're watching the Super Bowl and don't remember Raheem Mostert playing for the Ravens, forgive yourself.

The 49ers' surprise star running back was an undrafted rookie from Purdue who had already been cut by the Philadelphia Eagles and Miami Dolphins before he signed with the Ravens in October of 2015.

Mostert only played two offensive snaps for Baltimore and he was on the roster for just seven games, playing primarily on special teams as a kickoff returner. The Ravens went 5-11 that season and Mostert was cut in December, making the Ravens one of six teams that have cut Mostert.

Five years after that rookie season, a breakout performance in the NFC Championship has thrust Mostert into the limelight heading into Super Bowl LIV. Mostert became the first player to rush for at least 200 yards (220) and score four touchdowns in a playoff game, helping the 49ers to a 37-20 victory over the Green Bay Packers.

Mostert wrote about his challenging journey, and the determination it took to persevere in a first-person article for The Players Tribune. Being cut so many times was difficult for Mostert, but he said each rejection made him stronger.

After being released by the Ravens, Mostert also played for the Cleveland Browns, New York Jets and Chicago Bears before finding a home with the 49ers, who signed him to a three-year contract last March.

"As difficult and deflating as it was to be cut all those times, those setbacks needed to happen in order for me to be where I am today," Mostert wrote.

The Ravens have already seen a taste this season of what Mostert can do. During a rainy Week 13 game against the Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium, Mostert rushed for 146 yards on 19 carries, including a 40-yard burst for a touchdown in which he eluded multiple Ravens.

The Ravens won, 20-17, but Head Coach John Harbaugh was impressed with Mostert.

"He's really quick and has a real good feel for that play," Head Coach John Harbaugh said after the game. "I know the coaching staff has been running that play for about 100 years, so they know how to coach it."

Expect the 49ers to give Mostert opportunities to make big plays on Sunday. Being cut by the Ravens and others along the way no longer matters.

"All's well that ends well," Mostert said.

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