Ed "Pi Double i" Henderson
The Los Angeles Rams newly signed running back CJ Anderson, almost had a career day at State Farm Stadium on Sunday afternoon. Just signed five days before his game against the Arizona Cardinals, Anderson received the nod from head coach Sean McVay as the starter.
With injuries to starter Todd Gurley and reserved back Justin Davis, the Rams only had rookie running back John Kelly as the only healthy starter. Losing Malcolm Brown to a season-ending shoulder injury, Rams sought out for a veteran back with experience. A tremendous selection in signing Anderson who already had previously won a Superbowl with the Denver Broncos and rushed for over a 1,000 yards in a single season, and most importantly as a pass protector.
Anderson spoke proudly of himself having the opportunity to come and play for the Rams organization and blessed to that chance. However, he admirably placed his experience and pride in protecting the quarterback. He made jokes about how #18 (Peyton Manning) didn't play that if you did not protect him in the backfield.
Against the Cardinals, Anderson set his mark against the Cardinals with 20 carries for 167 yards and one touchdown, averaging 8.4 yards per carry, miss tying his career high by one yard. His only flaw was the one reception on an attempted screen play that resulted in a loss of five yards. On his first carry, set the tone for the Rams run game barreling ahead for six yards. Rookie running back Kelly added with 10 carries for 40 yards as the Rams had 269 total rushing yards. To Anderson's avail, he may have earned himself the NFC Offensive Player of the Week in just his first game with the Rams.
As the Rams prepare to play the season finale against the San Francisco 49ers at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, the question will remain if Gurley will play. After the production of Anderson, the Rams offense demonstrated that it could function without the 2017 NFL Offensive Player of the Year on the field. Anderson merely is another dimension on the Rams offensive side of the ball to give coordinators another problem to prepare.
The Broncos released CJ Anderson where he signed with the Carolina Panthers. Anderson had a short stint with the Panthers rushing the ball 24 times for 104 yards. Anderson was in a crowded backfield that featured Christian McCaffrey potentially on every down, Cameron Artis-Payne and wide-receiver Curtis Samuel the Panthers lines up at running back too.
The Panthers released Anderson after week 10 and signed by the Oakland Raiders in week 15. His stint with the Raiders lasted for one game as he waived when the Rams signed him a week later. The former pro bowl running back merry go around season may have landed him on an express ride to the Super Bowl if all works out well for the Rams.