This morning, the Colts signed free agent running back Chris Rainey (5-9, 180 pounds) to the active roster. There is no word yet on whom they will cut, but Rainey is a kick return specialist, which may spell the eventual end for either David Reed or Daniel "Boom" Herron. (There is an empty spot on the roster this week due to Erik Walden's suspension, so they don't have to make a move yet).
Rainey, the younger brother of Rod Smart (better known as He Hate Me), was a track star and kick returner at Florida who had a pretty solid year returning kicks for the Steelers last season.
From the Colts’ press release:
Rainey, 5-9, 180 pounds, was originally selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the fifth round (159th overall) of the 2012 NFL Draft out of the University of Florida. In 2012, he played in all 16 games, totaling 26 rushes for 102 yards and two touchdowns and 14 receptions for 60 yards. He also returned 39 kickoffs for 1,035 yards (26.5 avg.) and three punts for 16 yards. His kickoff return average ranked fifth in the AFC and tied for seventh in the NFL.
So, why hasn’t this speedy miniature running back earned a job this year? Well, this is a second chance of sorts. According to Pro Football Talk:
Rainey, a fifth-round draft pick in 2012, was dumped by the Steelers in the offseason after a string of off-field issues, culminating in an allegation that he assaulted his girlfriend. (Rainey’s girlfriend later denied that she had been assaulted.)
Rainey also tried to enter a Florida casino last year, from which he was on a self-exclusion list (sort of a voluntary ban that is upheld by Florida law), and he was arrested for driving with a suspended license in September 2012.
During college, he was in trouble over stalking and threatening his girlfriend (from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette):
Rainey was charged in 2010 with felony stalking for sending a threatening text to his then-girlfriend that said, "Time to die."
That charge was later reduced to a misdemeanor, and he was ordered to perform community service and attend anger-management classes, which he completed.
In short, Rainey had better be a tremendous kick returner and an even better citizen as this most likely is his last shot. If nothing else, the guy has NFL-caliber speed:
My roommate senior year of college was friends with Chris. Rainey might not be the smartest or most straight-laced, but he is a freak athlete, and I don't believe him to be a bad guy or lost cause. I hope he's matured and is ready to use his natural gifts to help out our team as well as advance his own career. I'll be rooting for him, and unless he can't hold onto the football, it can't be much worse than watching Reed flounder around back there.
Looks that way. I guess they can wait another week though. There's an open roster spot this week because of Erik Walden's suspension.
Chris Rainey played at Florida, not Florida State. Not that it matters, just thought I'd mention it.
Seriously, how was Reed NOT cut the week after his three returns from the EZ to the fifteen? Was that against Seattle all the way back there? I remember the announcers chuckling in the 2nd half when he decided to kneel. And then he returned ANOTHER to the 18 or so after that. The worst part is he kept on doing it, game after game. WTF are the coaches telling him? Maybe Satele shared whatever blackmail evidence he has on the staff with Reed.
As Forrest Gump's mama says, stupid is as stupid does.
Gee for a second there I was worried Rainey was guilty of a serious crime. You know like repeatedly attempting to return kicks from the -19.
Soft spot for second chances. Still the Colts seem to be granting a number of them Hope the good judgement calls holds up. Law of percentages offers reasons to doubt. Oh well can't have a whole team of Stanford grads.
I had to stop writing this to help my son get un-stuck from behind the couch. I missed the obvious roster thing. If you still see it, please refresh your browser instead of telling me about it. It's fixed. Thank you all for reading
Damn straight about the citizen part. I won't stand for these Colts turning into the old, thug-life Pacers (although it'd take more than one player to do that... still, though: The line is drawn).
Thanks for sharing that. I read some of his quotes while writing the Notebook post last night. He seems like a good guy. Also, did you watch the YouTube video? That's all NFL highlights of him. Dude is FAST.
@glwilliams4 ............................I'm on fire today, aren't I?
@Bobman1 Pagano originally defended Reed, saying he's a playmaker and a "game wreaker" (his favorite term, though oddly still accurate here) and he trusts him. After the STL debacle, he changed his tune a little bit. He didn't want to throw his guy under the bus, and I respect that, but he said that was something they wanted to fix.
@thellamajockey Yeah, we don't want to become Bengals West.
@hankster Hey, that's an improvement over returning them to the one.
In other news, David Reed has started threatening people to get back into the Colts' good graces. As he said to one Indy Star reporter, "I can see the writing on the wall. If I have to assault someone to earn my roster spot, I am willing to do that. Drunk and disorderly? I can manage that. If I have to go farther, well, let's just say I may call Ben Roethlisberger for some tips...."
@MarcusDugan LB's post popped up right as I hit post comment. I would not have spammed you otherwise. Well not unless it was to chime in on how unproductive Richardson is.
@MarcusDugan That's hilarious. It reminds me of the time my daughter got her head stuck in the staircase bannister railings. I told her it was a good thing the game was at halftime. Many years later I got my hand stuck in a sofa bed. She said it was karma.
@Payton You're right. I fixed it.
@LovinBlue Thanks. Already fixed.
@AJ_ We already have Walden, who got in trouble for domestic violence when he was with the packers. I don't want too many more like that.
Also, I sure don't miss Jamaal Tinsley, Stephen Jackson, Metta Crazy Ass Ron Whatever, or much of any of those guys. The worst part about the incident that ruined it all for Pacers fans (and for Reggie's last title run) was that Artest barely comprehended what had just happened. He broke broadcaster Mark Boyle's back charging into the stands and didn't remember running into him. He asked Jackson if he thought they would be in trouble. He was serious. Jackson told him they were never going to play in the NBA again.
@MarcusDugan I watched plenty of UF games (albeit just on TV) and saw plenty of Chris. I also saw some of the plays he made at the pro level. There's no denying that he's an athletic freak, and he's nearly as fast as Demps was (at one point, the Gators' RB depth was Harvin, Demps/Rainey, imagine THAT speed) and Urban Meyer said that Rainey actually outran Demps in a 40 yd dash (Demps being an olympic track star). I think that Demps is faster, but that's no slight as Demps was considered the fastest player in college football at one point, and Rainey is the stronger of the two and able to bounce off of contact even at full speed.
Okay, so Reed averages like 24 yards per KOR, meaning he runs from the -8 to the 16 on average. Bra-freakin-vo. Rainey averaged 26.5, so I'm hoping he returns his kicks from the -8 to the 18.5 yardline on average (a HUGE improvement by percentage!). (face palm) Or, if he really has matured, maybe he understands the value of a kneel. (a 25% improvement on every kickoff!)
And might I add, Pagano also whipped up an awesome phrase for TRich I haven't heard in months: "A rolling ball of butcher knives." Like game wrecker (double entendre alert!), maybe this isn't quite what he meant. Maybe he meant a block of butter knives--less movement and less dangerous. But the visual is still pretty much the same thing....
@Payton No worries, Payton. I appreciate the help. I just wanted to make sure I didn't end up with a half dozen email notifications of people pointing it out. Anyway, how 'bout that T 'Rich? ;-D
@glwilliams4 You're very kind. Thanks. I read a some StampedeBlue from time to time too. I've met Tyler Brooke a couple times - super nice guy (or kid? he's like 19 or something). I sure wish we had the search engine presence that SB has. Okay, I'm rambling. Thanks again, man. Brightened my day
@Bobman1 @smonroe lol. Bobman, I was going to say my kids are usually not getting themselves into situations like that, but my daughter got hurt at preschool today (She's doing fine now) and needed three stitches in her lip............from playing with a large ribbon. It's been some kind of day, but there's nothing like being a parent. Hard to explain to anyone else how awesome it is.