Los Angeles Rams RB Todd Gurley had a career low four carries in the NFC Championship on Sunday.
We can all admit it. Gurley’s knee inflammation is seriously hampering his ability to run at his normal speed and quickness. Well, we minus Rams Head Coach Sean McVay.
On Monday, McVay said:
To start, (RB) Todd (Gurley II) is healthy and he’s feeling good. He sure looked pretty healthy on that touchdown run where he ran through guys and demonstrated some explosion and what we know about him.
There is a 0.00% chance that if Todd Gurley is healthy and feeling good that he gets four carries in the NFC Championship. But you can’t really knock McVay for trying to cover for his star player. Gurley’s been an absolute professional since the inflammation around his knee really ramped up after the Rams’ Week 15 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. He’s handled the addition of RB C.J. Anderson to the team and his work rate like a consummate teammate, the embodiment of “We, not me.” As he said after the game:
“I was sorry,” Rams running back Todd Gurley about why he didn’t play much in the NFC Championship @nflnetwork pic.twitter.com/0fzUfULlZO— Steve Wyche (@wyche89) January 21, 2019
I was sorry as hell today. I was sorry. So, C.J. did his thing and the whole team did its thing.
So let’s not knock Gurley for his performance. He’s fighting through it just like CB Marcus Peters did in the middle of the season.
Here’s his reception near the end of regulation on 1st down on the series that set up the game-tying field goal from K Greg Zuerlein:
Todd Gurley gets through that 100% of the time if his knee’s 100%. It’s not.
So let’s just consider where we’re at.
The Rams are playing in Super Bowl LIII in less than two weeks. And Gurley’s knee is just not allowing him to be himself. So how much should he play? How involved in the gameplan should he be?
What can he be relied upon to do well at this point?
And how do you balance that with the threat that Meatball gives you as a bowling ball through the inside?
On the Friday before the Rams’ regular season finale in Week 17 against the San Francisco 49ers, McVay said:
It is important for us to get him back to full speed and to the health that he feels like he can go compete at and we’re not doing anything to put him at risk and he’s not doing anything for the longevity of his career.
Well, he’s not full speed. And he’s not at the health that he can go compete at.
So the bigger question is this.
Is playing him at this point putting him at risk? Is it putting the longevity of his career in jeopardy?
How injured is Just Todd Gurley?