A half forward flanker, Rattray debuted for Fitzroy in 1917 but his progress was stalled when he missed the following season due to military service. Rattray came back to the club in 1919 and won their best and fairest trophy. He won it again in 1921 and was a premiership player in 1922. In 1923 he became club captain and led them to the Grand Final which they lost to Essendon.
He left Fitzroy after the 1924 season and joined Brighton in the VFA as a playing coach and twice took the club to the decider. In 1928 he returned to Fitzroy and played what would be his final season, as captain-coach. During his career he represented Victoria at interstate football 5 times.