Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Bobby Rainey went off on Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons, piling up 163 yards and a pair of touchdowns on a whopping 30 carries while adding a receiving score in a lopsided victory. This is now the second straight week he’s found the end zone, and it looks like the job is his for the foreseeable future.
So, are we buying the hype and believing he can do this for the rest of the season? In two words: Probably not.
Here’s why. First of all, he wasn’t even the starter on Sunday as Brian Leonard got the nod for the second straight week. Obviously, that was a short-lived run for Leonard, who only got four carries after toting the ball 20 times (for a mere 57 yards) the week before. So, Rainey will be the starter on a terrible Bucs squad.
They’re playing the improved Detroit Lions run defense this week followed by another road test against the Carolina Panthers, arguably the best unit in the league right now. More than that, you have to look at Rainey’s track record. In his second year in the league, this is really the first time any team has let him on the field. In fact, he’s already been cut twice this season. That’s not a good sign.
If you watch him play, he just doesn’t pass the eye test. He is a shortish, slowish plodder who doesn’t seem to have that explosive step that differentiates the playmaker backs in the league.
That said, he should be the starter for at least the near future. And really, if anybody gets 30 carries in a game, they have as good a chance as any of turning out a decent game. Feel free to pick him up if you need RB help. Just don’t get your hopes up with Rainey or the Bucs.