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The Pittsburgh Steelers added a Little Lightning to the backfield by Selecting Chris Rainey who is one of the few running backs who could emulate Darren Sproles in this year’s draft. He may not be a top-round pick, but just like Sproles, he is a unique piece to add to any offense and can be dangerous no matter how you get the ball in his hands.
Height: 5’9″ Weight: 175 pounds
Arm Length: 30.75″ Hand Measurement: 9.5″
40-yard dash: 4.35 sec. 20-yard split: 2.58 sec. 10-yard split: 1.50 sec.
20-yard shuttle: 3.93 sec. 3-cone Drill: 6.50 sec. Bench Reps: 16
Vertical Jump: 36.5″ Broad Jump: 10′
2011 stats: 12 Games, 10 Games Started; 171 carries, 861 yards, 2 touchdowns; 31 catches, 381 yards, 2 touchdowns; 4 kick returns, 103 yards; 12 punt returns, 106 yards, 1 touchdown; 2 blocked kicks/punts.
National Football Post’s Wes Bunting breaks down his strengths:
An explosive straight-line athlete who can consistently outrun angles and break off big plays in the open field. Can consistently turn the corner and/or put his foot in the ground and accelerate up the field. Runs with a good pad level, stays low out of his breaks and runs/finishes behind his pads. Exhibits impressive lateral quickness when asked to make a man miss at top end speed.
And his weaknesses:
Is undersized however, a thin framed back who lacks the bulk and/or physicality to hold up inside at the next level… Doesn’t break many tackles and doesn’t possess the frame to do so in the NFL… Not an anchor player though… Doesn’t seem comfortable running at full speed at this stage and plucking the football, seems to gear down while locating the football.
Rainey provides an intriguing special-teams ace and receiver/running back option. He can be very similar to how the Falcons used Eric Weems as a No. 4 WR, gunner and return specialist.