When the Falcons signed Todd Gurley quickly after he was launched by the Rams in March, in addition they acquired the thriller of his knee damage historical past.
Almost two months after his crew added the two-time All-Professional operating again, Atlanta’s offensive coordinator, Dirk Koetter, admitted in a video name with native reporters that there are issues about whether or not Gurley can be wholesome sufficient to contribute in 2020.
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What Koetter says is truthful, provided that Gurley hasn’t had an opportunity to each get and go a bodily because the signing. However being too brutally trustworthy with the state of affairs wasn’t one of the best concept, provided that the Falcons’ entrance workplace expressed nice confidence in Gurley’s future well being standing when giving him a one-year, $5 million deal to switch the launched Devonta Freeman.
The Falcons have been anticipated to pick out a operating again in some unspecified time in the future through the 2020 NFL Draft for additional insurance coverage regardless, however they as an alternative rested on the three backs they took on Day three prior to now three drafts — so as: Ito Smith, Brian Hill and Qadree Ollison. Gurley’s age (26 in August) would possibly counsel he can nonetheless deal with a function position, however the actuality is, his heavy Rams mileage and the wear and tear and tear that got here with it say he is higher off with a extra managed workload.
The Falcons’ current finest backfield historical past has been a committee of Freeman and Tevin Coleman. Final season, with Freeman damage usually and Coleman gone in free company, the speeding assault in Koetter’s return ranked No. 30 within the NFL.
Throughout Koetter’s earlier stint as Atlanta’s offensive coordinator from 2012 to 2014, he additionally employed committees that included Michael Turner, Steven Jackson and Freeman within the early-down energy roles and Jacquizz Rodgers because the change of tempo receiving again. Based mostly on his feedback and play-calling previous, overextending Gurley would not appear to be in Atlanta’s plans.
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Gurley, in his finest years, has been a prolific, explosive between-the-tackles runner all through the crimson zone. With Sean McVay’s offense in Los Angeles, he additionally grew to become a top-flight busy receiver, main the NFL with 2,093 yards from scrimmage.
Due to that ability set, Koetter did add that he thinks Gurley is “a heck of a participant.” The Falcons desperately want a 15-to-20 contact Gurley to enhance an anemic operating recreation and assist a powerful passing recreation, provided that Smith, Hill and Ollison, for one cause or one other, weren’t efficient filling in for Freeman final season.
With the present uncertainty about Gurley’s well being expressed by Koetter, there’s now much more uncertainty about how a lot the Falcons can and can use Gurley in 2020.