With the tampering period now open ahead of free agency, it has brought forth the rumor mill around the NFL only a couple of days before the start of free agency. There has already been much movement Monday, with several teams being the aggressors in adding more significant pieces to the puzzle. Among that has sprouted rumors around the Los Angeles Rams concerning the availability of star running back Todd Gurley. That has added another wrinkle to the Rams‘ offseason plans that may see them explore the route of moving off their former All-Pro tailback.
Todd Gurley’s struggles in 2019
In the months heading into the 2019 season, there were plenty of questions concerning Gurley‘s health as he limped through the end of the previous year with injury question marks.
There wasn’t any clarity on where he stood physically as he missed some playing time at the end of the regular season, and wasn’t anywhere near the explosive player was before that in the playoffs. He was a complete non-factor in Super Bowl 53, which raised even more eyebrows at his cutdown usage rate.
That foreseeably saw the 2018 Offensive Player of the Year’s production deep as he notched just 857 rushing yards on 223 carries but did have 12 rushing touchdowns along with 31 receptions for 207 receiving yards and two touchdowns. Gurley failed to notch 100 rushing yards in a single game but did tally north of 90 rushing yards three times.
Although he displayed flashes of promise, he didn’t look anywhere near the player he was before his knee injury. On top of that, the Rams were operating on a set rest schedule to have him ready for games each week, which further hammered home the point that he isn’t the same physically.
With that in mind, the Rams have reached a point where they are considering move on from their Pro Bowl running back.
Rams shopping Todd Gurley?
Since the end of the 2019 season, there have continued to be questions around Gurley’s long-term future with the franchise.
That has ramped up a notch this week with Mike Silver of NFL.com reporting on Monday afternoon that Los Angeles has made the 25-year-old available on the trade market.
“The deal with [Todd] Gurley is this, you saw the Cardinals got out of the David Johnson contract. I think with Todd Gurley you can make the case he has a lot more left than David Johnson in eyes NFL coaches and talent evaluators. He has a big contract and the Rams have paid some other guys and want to move forward without him as I reported last December. They may cut him if they can’t find a trading partner when all is said and done. Right now if you want Todd Gurley, call the Rams.
That shouldn’t come as much of a surprise given the limitations and lack of production that Gurley experienced last year. It looks like that may become the norm for him on the field moving forward, which would further limit his impact on the game.
Gurley is entering the first year of his four-year, $57.5 million deal that runs through the 2023 season. His $7.5 million bonus will hit on March 20, which could put an onus on the Rams to move him before that mark hits this month.
What will the Rams do with Todd Gurley?
The Rams have tremendous respect for what Gurley has brought to the table for the franchise over the last several seasons. He has been a cornerpiece in what has helped the franchise find much success on the field.
However, his persistent health issues that don’t look like they will wane anytime soon could play him out of the mix. The Rams are reportedly looking to get a draft pick between the second and fourth, but it may just come down to another team being willing to take on the rest of his deal.
It may just come down to Rams finding the right deal to move off their star running back this offseason.