When the Pittsburgh Steelers face the St. Louis Rams in Week 3 of the regular-season, they’ll do so with starting running back Le’Veon Bell in their backfield as the former second-round draft pick’s suspension will be over at that point. The Rams, on the other hand, might very well be without the services of their rookie running back Todd Gurley for that game.
According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, Gurley, who was drafted this year out of Georgia in the first-round, still isn’t fully recovered from his knee surgery and the Rams don’t believe he’ll be ready by the start of the regular season. Rapoport reports that the belief is that Gurley will “miss the first couple games” of the 2015 season.
Gurley underwent surgery in late November to repair his torn ACL. Even though players with torn ACLs have been able to return to the field in less than a year from when their surgery took place, the Rams would be wise not to turn Gurley loose unless they know without a doubt that he’s fully recovered.
Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson made an incredible recovery after tearing the ACL and MCL in his left knee on Dec. 24, 2011. In fact, he played in every game the following season and ended the year with 2,097 yards rushing on 348 carries. However, Peterson was already a seasoned veteran at that time while Gurley is only a rookie.
The Rams game against the Steelers will take place on September 27 and that will be almost 10 months exactly from when his surgery took place. Will he make it back by then? We don’t have too long to wait until we know the answer to that question.
Should Gurley not be able to play in that game for the Rams, second-year running back Tre Mason would more than likely get the start. Mason rushed for 765 yards and four touchdowns in 2014 as a rookie.