Although both Todd Gurley and the Rams downplayed his knee injury, it was clearly an issue during the NFC champions’ stretch run. More clarity emerged on that front to help explain the two-time All-Pro’s limited postseason usage.
Gurley has arthritis in his left knee, according to The Athletic’s Jeff Howe (on Twitter). This is the same knee on which Gurley underwent ACL surgery in 2014, his final season at Georgia.
Sean McVay said this week surgery is “definitely” not in the cards but added during an interview with CBS Sports the Rams were examining “new methods” to help their ailing superstar. But it appears some form of rehab will be forthcoming, and the major investment the Rams made in Gurley does not look quite as good as it did last summer.
Still just 24, Gurley has posted three 1,000-yard rushing seasons and was on pace to push for a 25-plus-touchdown campaign in 2018. He missed the final two games of the regular season, scuttling that prospect and causing concern for his playoffs availability. Gurley was a key presence in the Rams’ ground-centered gashing of the Cowboys in the divisional round, but C.J. Anderson remain a big factor throughout the playoffs. Gurley averaged 5.3 yards per carry in the playoffs but totaled just 160 in Los Angeles’ three games, ceding time to Anderson and not frequently resembling his explosive pre-injury version.
Anderson, who made a seamless transition to McVay’s offense that is somewhat similar to the Gary Kubiak-based attack in which the Broncos’ former starter operated, is a free agent but would make sense as a longer-term Gurley insurance option.
Gurley’s gargantuan contract calls for $34.5MM in fully guaranteed money going forward. Another $9.5MM is guaranteed for injury. His status will obviously be something to monitor throughout the offseason.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.