Ed "Pi Double i" Henderson
For the second consecutive week, the Los Angeles Rams have announced that starting running back Todd Gurley will not play. The Rams will host the San Francisco 49ers at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Sunday with the final regular season and final regular season home game.
Gurley who did not play last week against the Arizona Cardinals because of an inflamed knee did not practice again this week dealing with the same knee issue. As a contingency plan, the Rams signed former pro bowl and super bowl winning running back C.J. Anderson to the team. Anderson the veteran back did not disappoint in his day view as he rushed for 167 yards on 20 carries and one touchdown.
Before acquiring Anderson, the Rams had only one healthy running back in rookie John Kelly, who did not disappoint with his carries against the Cardinals either as he averaged 4.0 yards per rush with ten rushing attempts for 40 yards.
Justin Davis the other Rams running back who injured his shoulder against the Philadelphia Eagles, was uncertain if he was able to play last week. However, Davis did suit up but played only on special teams.
As Gurley continue to heal, head coach Sean McVay is optimistic that Anderson can continue to carry the load running the ball against a tough 49ers defense. Despite the fact of Gurley's ruling out, this must-win game scenario allows Gurley to heal one additional week. If the Rams can beat the 49ers not only will they have gone unbeaten in the NFC West, but will also secure a first-round bye in the playoffs.
If the Rams can secure a first-round bye, this will allow Gurley an additional two weeks for his knee to heal and fresh for the playoff run. In addition to Gurley being ruled out, McVay also announced that starting free-safety LaMarcus Joyner is out too with a bad ankle. Joyner banged himself up against the Cardinals as he and cornerback Aqib Talib collided attempting to defend against an errant Josh Rosen pass. Both players left the game momentarily as Talib returned a series later.
Marqui Christian and Blake Countess will play in Joyner's position as he continues to heal his ankle.