Fantasy Sleepers

Fantasy Value: Bobby Rainey

Bobby Rainey Fantasy

As the fantasy football playoffs are rapidly approaching, we may have stumbled upon that dream scenario where you’re able to add a late-season waiver-wire gem to your team and he comes out of nowhere to go on a tear and lead your team to the championship. Remember that Arian Foster guy in 2009?

Bobby RaineyFantasy Value: Bobby Rainey

As the fantasy football playoffs are rapidly approaching, we may have stumbled upon that dream scenario where you’re able to add a late-season waiver-wire gem to your team and he comes out of nowhere to go on a tear and lead your team to the championship. Remember that Arian Foster guy in 2009?

Ok, so maybe Bobby Rainey is no Arian Foster, but he might be just the kind of running back that can bolster your lineup at just the right time.

If you were proactive enough to add Rainey last week, give yourself a pat on the back. If you were crazy gutsy enough to start him in Week 11-and the numbers say that was only 3% of fantasy zealots- congrats on your win. And if Rainey went unclaimed in your league last week (like in 75% of Yahoo leagues), well this is what you’ve been saving all that free agency money for.

Buried well behind starter Doug Martin and rookie Mike James, Bobby Rainey was not expected to make any sort of impact for the Bucs this season. But season-ending injuries to Martin and James paved the way for Rainey to get an opportunity against Atlanta’s subpar run defense.

And the un-drafted, second-year player out of Western Kentucky certainly made the most out of his first real shot. Rainey was a beast on Sunday, churning out 163 rushing yards and scoring three touchdowns in Tampa’s 41-28 thrashing of the Falcons.

As good as that performance was, watching the game makes you think that the Bucs have major confidence in their latest backfield find. Rainey out-touched teammate Brian Leonard 32-8 and managed to hit the trifecta of touchdowns, scoring on a dynamic 43-yard gallop, through the air and even chipping in a short-yardage plunge.

Before anyone thinks that this performance was fluky against Atlanta’s generous run-stopping unit, keep in mind that Rainey averaged 5.6 yards-per-carry and also scored a touchdown off the bench in Week 10, when he first got extensive action after Mike James was lost for the season.

Buccaneer’s Upcoming Match-ups

Week Opponent Rush Yards Rank Total TD
14 Bills 1163 30th 4
15 49ers 893 15th 10
16 @Rams 1058 27th 12

Even better, Tampa’s remaining schedule looks very conducive for very nice fantasy production for the running game- especially come playoff time. In the critical Weeks 14-16, The Buccaneers host a Buffalo defense that has given up the third most rushing yards in the league, a 49ers team that has already surrendered 12 touchdowns to opposing running backs and on Championship Week, travel to St. Louis to take on the Rams’ leaky run D.

Fantasy Factor

Obviously Bobby Rainey is going to be a very popular waiver-wire add in the vast majority of fantasy leagues this week. If you have been stashing your top priority spot, or free agent bidding money, this is the payday you’ve been waiting for. Consider Rainey a nice RB2 or flex play moving forward, and with a fantasy-friendly remaining schedule and little competition for carries, a possible difference make down the stretch.

 

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