Now that the Los Angeles Rams have released Todd Gurley, he no longer has to hope someone will trade for him. One team that was reportedly showing a little interest when they thought they would have to trade for him can talk to him directly and work out a contract. That team could end up being one of bigger winners of the free agency market if they can nab Gurley and see him stay healthy in 2020.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers got their quarterback in Tom Brady. According to Scott Polachek of Bleacher Report, they could also be going after Gurley, hoping he can return to his “impact back” status. Polachek points out there are more than a few analysts out there who believe the Bucs have a real interest in the running back.
Earlier this week, if there was something getting in the way of trading for Gurley, it was his salary and cap status. Now, both of those can basically be reset by whatever team goes after him on the open market. As Tom Pelissero pointed out on Twitter, Los Angeles saved itself over $10 million by cutting him today and not tomorrow. He’s still counting for more than $20 million of dead money on their salary cap number.
Forever a part of our history.
— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) March 19, 2020
Polachek says the Bucs aren’t the only team interested in Gurley. A bidding war for the running back will be money, rather than draft picks or other players now.
Todd Gurley rumors had been rumbling since the end of the season, though trades had taken up most of the talk. His salary and decline in production had Los Angeles thinking it needed to start over with a different back.
Damn I got fired on my day off???? #QuaratineAndChill
— Todd Gurley II (@TG3II) March 19, 2020
That came as a bit of a surprise to some people around the league simply because he hasn’t been around that long and isn’t that far removed from Pro Bowl seasons.
Gurley has played five seasons, all with the Rams, and has run for over 1,000 yards in three of them. That included a rookie campaign where he ran for 1,100 yards and 10 touchdowns.
After a subpar sophomore season, he bounced back big time in 2016. That year he ran for a career-high 1,305 yards and 13 touchdowns. While he was a punishing runner, he’s also been a threat as a receiver. That season he hauled down 64 passes for 788 yards and six touchdowns.
The following season he ran for 1,251 yards and 17 touchdowns. For the second straight year, he came close to averaging five yards per carry. Gurley added 59 catches for 580 yards and another four touchdowns.
In 2019, Gurley ran for just over 800 yards and saw his yards per carry drop to just under four yards. Now, the Rams will move on and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers could have a new running back if the rumors are true.