The Los Angeles Rams’ unceremonious launch of Todd Gurley left an unlimited gap in the course of their offense.
Coach Sean McVay and normal supervisor Les Snead do not imagine they’ll fill it with only one working again.
The Rams intend to rely much less on a single ball-carrier and extra on a proficient group of working backs within the upcoming season, McVay and Snead mentioned Monday of their first public feedback on their greatest offseason transfer.
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“What we wish to be is a workforce that makes use of greater than only one workhorse working the ball, have a distinct style of ability units and a complimentary-type working sport,” Snead mentioned. “We now have this big-picture imaginative and prescient, Darrell (Henderson) being part of it, however we do count on different items to be a giant a part of it as nicely.”
Henderson, who barely performed as a rookie third-round decide final season, is the highest in-house candidate to exchange Gurley, one of many NFL’s most efficient working backs of the final half-decade. Longtime backup Malcolm Brown additionally returns, and Snead indicated the Rams will likely be trying laborious at working backs within the draft.
Working the ball by committee will likely be a serious change for the Rams, who had Gurley on the heart of all the things for the previous 5 years.
“We definitely don’t change the manufacturing, the best way that he’s influenced and affected the sport,” McVay mentioned. “However what we are able to proceed to do is attempt to modify and adapt.”
Gurley, the AP’s 2017 Offensive Participant of the 12 months, leads the NFL with 58 dashing touchdowns since becoming a member of the league in 2015. His 5,404 yards dashing in that stretch are 1 yard behind Ezekiel Elliott for the league lead.
That is an terrible lot of manufacturing to exchange, even after Gurley’s numbers declined final season amid issues about his left knee. The Rams have been compelled by payroll constraints and Gurley’s waning manufacturing to launch him March 19 earlier than he even received to the primary season of his four-year, $60 million contract extension — the most important in NFL historical past for a working again when he agreed to it in 2018.
That deal, which included $45 million in ensures, will loom as one of many greatest tactical errors of Snead’s eight-year tenure. However the GM nonetheless feels he did the precise factor general in paying his extremely productive star.
“From a remorse standpoint, there’s no method you possibly can ever remorse the yards he gained, the touchdowns he scored for us,” Snead mentioned. “The championships, whether or not it’s two division titles or (the) convention championship. The Tremendous Bowl look. That will likely be powerful to remorse. What I can say is, clearly I feel all of us want the partnership might have lasted longer. However from a standpoint of Todd incomes that contract, no, he did earn that. I feel that confirmed up within the manufacturing and the way he helped us win.”
The Atlanta Falcons scooped up Gurley with a one-year, $6 million deal formally introduced Monday.
Gurley had his two greatest NFL seasons throughout McVay’s first two years in cost. He rushed for a mixed 2,556 yards in 2017 and 2018 whereas rating among the many league leaders in touches for his younger head coach.
McVay mentioned he by no means might have imagined being with out Gurley at this level of their careers even a 12 months in the past. The coach faces a brand new problem within the upcoming season with out Gurley to rely on — though looking back, that transition already started final 12 months.
When Gurley’s touches and manufacturing declined final season, McVay steadfastly claimed Gurley was wholesome and able to doing regardless of the Rams wanted, even after Los Angeles completed with the NFL’s 26th-ranked dashing offense behind an injury-riddled offensive line.
On Monday, McVay additionally expressed disappointment on the method Gurley’s tenure led to LA.
“There’s a variety of issues that went into it, however on the finish of the day, this man has been instrumental in serving to create a variety of the nice issues which might be happening in our constructing,” McVay mentioned. “Assume he’ll do job for the Falcons, however in a variety of methods, it’s a reflection on the boldness that that now we have in these guys which might be in place with Darrell Henderson, with Malcolm Brown.”
Snead acknowledged Gurley’s departure is a lift to the Rams’ plans to re-sign cornerback Jalen Ramsey, who arrived final season in a commerce that despatched the Rams’ subsequent two first-round picks to Jacksonville. Ramsey, a three-time Professional Bowl choice, is heading into the ultimate 12 months of his rookie contract.
“Anytime you remove a big wage, it does enable you onboard one other giant wage,” Snead mentioned. “We’re a workforce that’s going by means of it: Often groups which have success have gamers with comparatively giant salaries. You’ll be able to’t pay everybody giant salaries, although you desire to to have the ability to. However this isn’t faculty soccer the place perhaps you possibly can simply proceed out-recruiting others. Typically you lose gamers.”
“With Jalen, we’ve communicated along with his reps, and we’ll hold these issues inside. However we undoubtedly like Jalen, as we mentioned. That may be apparent.”