Matthew Stafford’s elbow injury is so unusual, it’s being likened to other sports to find semblances of similarities.
Baseball is the game that’s come up most when discussing his recent ailment, and while Rams head coach Sean McVay wouldn’t go as far as calling it elbow “tendinitis” Thursday, he did admit that several pitchers have dealt with mirroring issues.
“It’s a tricky deal,” McVay told reporters during a team press conference Thursday. “It’s abnormal for a QB, things that MLB pitchers deal with. We’re learning more about it on the fly.”
“On the fly” is not the most reassuring approach to hear for fans of a franchise, especially as it pertains to a star QB.
And despite the Rams’ best efforts to downplay the injury’s severity, including having Stafford participate in 7-on-7 throwing drills Thursday, Chris Broussard believes he can see right through their front. For Broussard, the situation should be particularly concerning for the squad.
“I’m not predicting doom, but I don’t think it’s merely arm fatigue,” Broussard asserted Friday on “First Things First.” “Here’s the timeline for this: He had some pain in his elbow last year, played through it and played well. And then he had the anti-inflammatory injection in the offseason that they thought would alleviate the pain. He didn’t throw in OTAs or minicamp, goes to training camp full bore, and then a few days ago the elbow starts to bother him.
Matt Stafford battling ‘bad tendinitis’ per Sean McVay
For the moment, Matthew Stafford won’t be participating in team drills in the hopes that his injured elbow will strengthen, but there’s a chance that the pain could linger into the 2022 season. Nick Wright, Chris Broussard and Kevin Wildes decide how worried the defending Super Bowl champions should be.
“That was probably a surprise to the Rams, and now he’s not going to throw the rest of training camp. It’s something to worry about. Obviously, they want him to develop some chemistry and timing with their free-agent WR, Allen Robinson II. Don’t overreact, but any time I hear a quarterback’s situation compared to a pitcher in MLB – when I look at how often pitchers get hurt – that ain’t good.”
Nick Wright expressed even more uneasiness.
“I think it’s quite a bit concerning,” he said. “I’m going to say that Sean McVay talking about holding him out of practice is enough confirmation that we need.
“I’m not high enough on the Rams to pick them to repeat as Super Bowl champions, but I do think they should be one of the two best teams in the conference. However, the *bleep* them picks strategy does have a downside, and the downside is, they’ve built a very top-heavy roster.”
The Rams certainly boast one of the most star-studded rosters in the NFL, but they’re seemingly far from a title contender without their big-armed signal-caller. And if the injury continues to plague Stafford’s throwing elbow, the team could be in for a world of trouble as it embarks upon its repeat quest.
“No team can deal with the loss of its star quarterback for a very long period of time, but when you look at how they’re built – they have the best defensive player in football, best corner, some would argue the best receiver – you’re not going to have the depth in other places,” Wright opined. “The other reason this is concerning to me is the biggest question mark on their team is the offensive line. All of these are minor concerns that can become major ones. This isn’t disastrous, but it’s obviously concerning.”
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