OWINGS MILLS, Md. — A day after he was waived to create room for Anthony Allen on the 53-man roster, rookie running back Bobby Rainey will remain with the Ravens after signing a practice squad contract.
The undrafted free agent from Western Kentucky said in a text message to WNST.net that he cleared waivers and will go on the eight-man developmental squad after being one of the most pleasant surprises of training camp and initially making the 53-man roster. Rainey was waived due to a need for Allen’s presence on special teams as the roster move was announced shortly before Monday night’s game against the Bengals.
“Bobby Rainey is a big part of our plans,” coach John Harbaugh said after Monday night’s game. “I texted Bobby before the game. He is, rightly so, kind of upset about it. Bobby is a guy that I cherish. We just did it for special teams reasons, pure and simple. Anthony Allen has done a great job on special teams, and we made a strategic roster move we hope works out for us.”
Rainey was used as a punt returner in the preseason, but he did not stand out as a contributor to any of the other special teams units. Fan reaction was strong toward the decision to waive Rainey as many feared he would be picked up by another NFL team looking for depth at the running back position.
The 5-foot-8 running back rushed for 55 yards on 23 carries and was the team’s leading receiver in the preseason, catching 14 passes for 163 yards and two touchdowns.