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Ravens defense prepping for diminutive ex-Ravens running back Bobby Rainey

Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Bobby Rainey takes the field for warmups before preseason action against the Miami Dolphins.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Bobby Rainey takes the field for warmups before preseason action against the Miami Dolphins. (Brendan Fitterer / MCT)

When diminutive running back Bobby Rainey was cut by the Ravens a year ago, they were reserving a spot for him on the practice squad.

The Cleveland Browns had other ideas, though, and claimed Rainey off waivers before ultimately cutting him two months later.

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Now, Rainey is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' leading rusher with 220 yards and a touchdown heading into Sunday's game against the Ravens at Raymond James Stadium. The 5-foot-8, 212-pound back ranks third on the team with 16 receptions for 139 yards and a touchdown. Last year, Rainey had an 80-yard touchdown run against the Buffalo Bills, the longest run in Buccaneers franchise history.

"We like Bobby, it was unfortunate that we lost him," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "We really wanted him to be here to be a part of what we were doing, but he was claimed and we had to make a move there. The rest is history. He's put a bunch of yards up."

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Rainey divides carries with running back Doug Martin. Rainey was benched for losing two fumbles earlier this season in a 56-14 loss to the Atlanta Falcons, but is back in the game plan now.

Rainey is averaging 4.7 yards per carry this season and rushed for a touchdown against the New Orleans Saints last week.

"He's been a huge pick-up for us," Buccaneers quarterback Mike Glennon said during a conference call with Baltimore reporters. "Whatever we ask him to do, he's always performing and executing well whether it's running the ball, he's great in pass protection, and he's a really smart back. He's so small and crafty that guys have a hard time bringing him down. We're lucky to have him."

Rainey rushed for 532 yards and five touchdowns last season for the Buccaneers after being claimed off waivers.

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"We know Bobby Rainey, we know what he's capable of doing," Ravens cornerback Lardarius Webb said. "We all wish [he] could have stayed around here. We know how much he loves the game.

"He's passionate about the game. We've got to attack him and be on him. He's a great back. He's got juke moves and he'll try to run you over."

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