One of the biggest moves the Los Angeles Rams made this offseason was cutting Todd Gurley, who spent the previous five years with the team. It was a cap-saving decision, but also one that had to do with Gurley’s past knee issues.
He missed time at the end of the 2018 season and was limited throughout the playoffs that year, and last season, his workload was lessened in an attempt to keep him fresh. Now a member of the Atlanta Falcons after signing a one-year deal with them, Gurley’s knee has already become a question within the organization.
On Thursday, offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter said he doesn’t know the status of Gurley’s health.
“The main question is, that no one seems to know, is what is his health status? What’s his workload?” Koetter said on a conference call. “He averaged about 17 touches a game last year, which is a little bit lower than he had been when he was All-Pro. We’re just gonna have to find that out once we get here and get him working, get him up and running.”
That’s a shocking statement for the offensive coordinator to make after the team just paid Gurley $5.5 million. It also indicates there might be a disconnect between the front office and coaching staff with the way they view Gurley.
There are obvious questions about Gurley’s knee after his trainer said last year that there’s an “arthritic component” to it. His limited workload in 2019 would seem to indicate the Rams knew something was off, as did their decision to cut him.
Devonta Freeman is no longer in the picture in Atlanta, which leaves Gurley as the top running back on the depth chart. But how Koetter uses him remains to be seen.
Regardless, Gurley’s tenure in Atlanta isn’t off to a great start.