The newest Atlanta Falcons running back is already giving fans panic attacks
Back in 2018, the Los Angeles Rams made Todd Gurley the highest-paid running back at the time. Two seasons later, the Rams outright released him due to their extremely minimal amount of cap space entering the 2020 season. The Atlanta Falcons opted to bring in the former Georgia Bulldog on a one-year, $5.5 million deal. Training camp has started, and there’s already an eye-opening update on Gurley.
Head coach Dan Quinn hinted that he’s considering limiting Gurley’s workload to ensure he’ll be healthy throughout the 2020 season. According to Vaughn McClure of ESPN, Gurley “walked with a noticeable limp and wore a compression sock on his left leg, yet he showed speed and explosion during drills.”
Is this the new reality with Todd Gurley?
This is to be expected with Gurley at this stage of his career. We can’t forget that Gurley had surgery to repair a torn ACL during his final year at Georgia in 2014, and considering the amount of wear-and-tear he’s had in the NFL, it appeared to take a toll on him. Can you really blame Quinn for trying to take it easy with the running back? Of course, you can’t!
Gurley won the NFL’s Offensive Player of the Year Award back in 2017 after accumulating 2,093 yards and 19 touchdowns from scrimmage on 343 touches. He was handsomely rewarded by the Rams with a four-year, $60 million contract extension. Gurley started the 2018 campaign strong but saw his role in head coach Sean McVay’s offense diminish due to knee issues. That’s why the Rams ran heavy with CJ Anderson during their run to Super Bowl 53.
Last season, Gurley did rush for 12 touchdowns, but he averaged just 3.8 yards per carry, his lowest since his sophomore season in 2016 while playing in Jeff Fisher’s anemic offense. That was when the Rams decided to cut bait with Gurley for the sake of freeing up cap space before the 2020 NFL Draft.
Gurley is looking to show his former team and the entire world that he’s still one of the best running backs in the game. Luckily for him, he’s in a situation with the Falcons where he won’t be relied on heavily. If Gurley were to have a setback, the Falcons will move forward with Ito Smith, Brian Hill and Qadree Ollison.
Either way, expect an extremely motivated Gurley to take the field every week this year.