Monday, February 19, 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Rainey hopes to stick with Bucs

TAMPA — Bucs RB Bobby Rainey received a game ball for his breakout performance on Monday Night Football.

Rainey, 26, hopes he'll soon have a house to put it in.

It has been a whirlwind month for Rainey. He was claimed off waivers from the Browns on Oct. 21 and flew to Paducah, Ky., a week later for the birth of his daughter, Kyvee Jolie. While Rainey caught up on the playbook, he house hunted in Tampa Bay, finding a place in Westchase, north of Tampa, on which he is waiting for approval.

Rainey rushed for 45 yards and the go-ahead touchdown in the 22-19 win over the Dolphins on Monday. He likely will shoulder a significant load going forward.

Monday Night Football, everybody's watching," Rainey said of his first carries for the Bucs. "After the game, I looked at my phone and had 36 text messages. The first person I called was my fiance. I wanted to talk to my daughter, but she can't talk back. Then I called my mom."

Rainey went undrafted in 2012 out of Western Kentucky, where he rushed for 1,695 yards as a senior. He received a Super Bowl ring with the Ravens last season despite not being active for any games. He thought he'd stick with the Browns but was waived after six games. Rainey said one of his former teammates joked after Monday's game, "Where else you going to end up at?"

Rainey said it was tough to stay patient. But after Mike James broke his left ankle on the opening series Monday, Rainey split carries with Brian Leonard. Rainey set up his 1-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter with a 31-yard run.

"I think I proved I'm able to play in this league, and I did my job," Rainey said. "I'm ready for any load that (coach Greg Schiano) is willing to give me."

As for Monday's game ball?

"It's going in the man cave," Rainey said, "if I get approved for the house."

MEA CULPA: Eric Page on Monday had a 52-yard punt return, the Bucs' longest in four seasons. But Page also received a lot of attention — and the ire of Schiano — for his personal foul penalty midway through the fourth quarter when he hit cornerback R.J. Stanford.

Once the ball bounced past him near the left sideline, Page said, he thought it would stay inbounds and he tried to block Stanford so he wouldn't down it deep inside Bucs territory. But the ball bounced out of bounds at the 22-yard line, Stanford stopped running and Page hit him.

"I've got to be smarter than that," Page said. "I think it just looked a lot worse than it was because the guy stopped running. If he continued to run, he can shield his way off. It's a hard call."

TOUGH TASK: Rookie DT Akeem Spence said he doesn't know why Dolphins C Mike Pouncey punched him in the face mask on the first series, drawing a penalty. But Spence knows how tough it was not to retaliate. "It was the hardest thing I've ever had to do," he said. "But sometimes you have to turn the other cheek."

MISCELLANY: The Bucs placed James on injured reserve and signed undrafted rookie RB Michael Hill off of the Packers' practice squad. … Schiano said DE Da'Quan Bowers is having tests after experiencing "concussion-like symptoms" and his status for Sunday against the Falcons was uncertain. … WR Vincent Jackson (knee) and S Mark Barron (knee) were limited at practice.

Times staff writer Rick Stroud contributed to this report.

Comments
Bucs agree to terms with Brentson Buckner to be their defensive line coach

Bucs agree to terms with Brentson Buckner to be their defensive line coach

Brentson Buckner didn't need to bring his resume when he interviewed for the Bucs' job as defensive line coach. No references were needed, either.All the Bucs had to do was ask quarterback Jameis Winston whether the Arizona Cardinals defensive line w...
Updated: 2 hours ago
On the mend: Bucs’ Noah Spence posts workout pic

On the mend: Bucs’ Noah Spence posts workout pic

Defensive end Noah Spence, whose two NFL seasons have both been limited by injuries to his right shoulder, is getting himself healthy for the 2018 season.Spence has kept a low profile since the Bucs placed him on injured reserve in late October, a mo...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Video: Bucs QB Ryan Fitzpatrick gives advice to Little Leaguers

Video: Bucs QB Ryan Fitzpatrick gives advice to Little Leaguers

Ryan Fitzpatrick is an unrestricted free agent, and his future with the Bucs remains uncertain. But the veteran quarterback is still very much here in Tampa and still sharing his wisdom with younger athletes.In this case, they're much younger —...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Jameis Winston is about to get a big pay raise. It will cost the Bucs more than money

Jameis Winston is about to get a big pay raise. It will cost the Bucs more than money

TAMPA – Jameis Winston is heading for a big payday with the Bucs. He's played well enough to make that an easy decision.But what impact will that have on the type of players they surround him with?The Bucs are expected to exercise the fifth-yea...
Published: 02/16/18
Bucs interview Brentson Buckner for defensive line job

Bucs interview Brentson Buckner for defensive line job

The Bucs continue to move quickly with the defensive line opening on Dirk Koetter's coaching staff, interviewing former Cardinals assistant Brentson Buckner.Buckner, 46, spent the last five years as Arizona's defensive line coach, leading the unit to...
Published: 02/16/18
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Jameis Winston investigation, Lightning trade possibilities, more

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Jameis Winston investigation, Lightning trade possibilities, more

It’s a Mailbag Friday as Rick Stroud answers your questions, including what will happen with the Jameis Winston investigation, who should the Bucs sign in free agency and would Warren Sapp make a good defensive line coach?Also, who will win more game...
Published: 02/16/18
Kevin Pamphile on Bucs’ O-line: ‘We’re not far from breaking through’

Kevin Pamphile on Bucs’ O-line: ‘We’re not far from breaking through’

Free agency is less than a month away, and the Bucs have several decisions to make about unrestricted free agents from their 2017 squad. One is Kevin Pamphile, who started all but one game at left guard last season but still split the job with backup...
Published: 02/16/18
Jameis Winston’s ‘Eat a W’ ritual lives on at Florida State

Jameis Winston’s ‘Eat a W’ ritual lives on at Florida State

Jameis Winston's pregame "Eat a 'W'" speech didn't go over too well the last time he gave it in front of the cameras and teammates.Before the Bucs-Saints game in New Orleans on Nov. 5, Winston formed a "W" with the fingers on his right hand and proce...
Published: 02/15/18
Browsing the Bucs’ needs and possible free-agent answers

Browsing the Bucs’ needs and possible free-agent answers

No sooner had the Bucs 5-11 season ended than coach Dirk Koetter identified the two areas his team needed to improve for 2018."I think we were 3-7 in one score games. You're going to have a hard time getting where you want to go when you win 30 perce...
Published: 02/15/18
Free agency preview: Brate, Humphries lead Bucs’ restricted free agents

Free agency preview: Brate, Humphries lead Bucs’ restricted free agents

NFL free agency is now just a month away, and as we begin the process of previewing the 2018 free agent class, we'll start with a less prominent part that is still relevant for the Bucs this year: restricted free agents.Unrestricted free agents have ...
Published: 02/14/18