Instead of a shootout Orlando Pace Jersey , what if the Rams advanced to the Super Bowl with a shutout?"The NFL must be pretty excited to see the #1 and #2 NFC teams go up against each other in the NFC Championship game. This should be a close yet high scoring contest with big stars and even the idea that these teams hate each other something awful. Even though a handful of talking heads are taking the Saints, most folks are predicting a close one.Let’s get bold.Lock Angeles will grab three INTs and limit Drew Brees to less than 200 yardsBy the end of the game, CB Marcus Peters will be the main topic — the guy will be playing with so much emotion and raw talent that something exciting could very well happen (or a weird meltdown, take your pick.) Me? I’m going with a hero moment.Dante Fowler Jr. gets through the battered Saints OL for 3 sacksThe two big knocks on the Rams have been the inconsistent secondary and the no-name linebacker unit. Well, on the national stage, these guys are going to step up by making a name for themselves with OLB Fowler and Samson Ebukam showing up to knock some dudes around. The Saints will only score a handful of field goalsThe idea that the Saints won’t be able to find their way into the end zone is pretty crazy town Deacon Jones Jersey , but that’s how good the secondary is going to play. This will be huge. Just like last week, when the defensive line stepped up after being criticized for having a weak run defense, the defensive backs are going to be playing with some pride.Jared Goff will throw for 325+ yards and3 touchdownsWhatever, man. These are my predictions, I can do what I want.Rams win, 42-17. After Gurley suffered from a "wear and tear" issue late last year Eric Dickerson Jersey , it sounds like McVay is committing to more of both in 2019."That was NFL Network’s Steve Wyche nearly two months ago on the injury Los Angeles Rams RB Just Todd Gurley was suffering from at the end of the regular season.The saga of Gurley’s knee has taken plenty of twists and turns since Super Bowl LIII, the latest coming yesterday when Rams HC McVay and Gurley, among other Rams, addressed convened media as the Rams began their official offseason program.Given Gurley’s jobshare in the postseason with RB C.J. Anderson who wasn’t even on the team until Week 16, it was fair to anticipate a reduced role for Gurley in 2019. Whatever the “wear and tear” issue which might or might not have been related to the arthritis he’s supposedly suffering from, continuing to give Gurley as many touches seemed perhaps unlikely.Welp:(4:55 mark for the relevant question)It’s an interesting answer and one that matches what McVay said recently on the Rich Eisen Show:(2:22 mark for the relevant quote)So it’s worth clarifying where things stand with the 2019 NFL Draft coming in just a week.Neither McVay nor Gurley in his remarks yesterday alluded to the idea that he’s going to be fully healthy for Week 1. Obviously Marshall Faulk Jersey , as Todd himself noted, it’s somewhat impossible to know how his knee will heal over the next four months. But there was a notable lack of similarity between McVay’s comments on Todd’s injury and his response on WR Cooper Kupp where he was decidedly more specific and upbeat. That’s not to say McVay wasn’t as upbeat or optimistic about Todd, but perhaps more respectful of the unknown.Because that’s really what this is all about. The unknown of how Todd Gurley’s knee will respond. Gurley aggravated the knee in Week 1, but it responded well enough for Gurley to continue to be the bellcow. After Week 15, not so much.The anxiety is going to be unavoidable. We just don’t know when Gurley’s knee will react like it did in Week 1 and when it will react like it did in Week 15.But clearly, less is more in this case. The less Gurley exposes himself Nolan Cromwell Jersey , the more likely he remains healthy.If we’re to take McVay’s words to account though, it sounds as if we shouldn’t expect to see Gurley much less than we did throughout the last two seasons.Here were Gurley’s carries per week:That’s a pretty stark decline over the course of the season without any major loss of work due to personnel. While Brown was injured in Week 13, the Rams didn’t respond with any personnel change at running back; moreover, neither John Kelly nor Justin Davis picked up any more work than Brown had in backing up Gurley.In the first 12 games of the season, Gurley accounted for 83.83% of the team’s carries. In the next two without Brown, that number barely moved at all increasing to 85.19%. In the playoff jobshare with Anderson across three games? Gurley accounted for 56.96% Kurt Warner Jersey , 46.38% and 66.15% of the Rams’ carries.So what does being a “focal point” or “central point” mean? Does it mean work rates above 80% and workloads of more than 15 carries per game? Does it mean less and allow for an expanded role for Brown? Do the Rams intend on taking a running back in the draft to take on that role?It’s hard to say right now.But the Rams can’t simply use Gurley with reckless abandon. They re-signed him to a massive deal in July worth $60m with 75% of it guaranteed at signing. The earliest the Rams could get out of the deal would be the 2021 offseason and that would incur dead cap space of more than $8m.So the Rams likely are committed to Todd Gurley for the next three years. Managing his workload and limiting the wear and tear will be an absolutely vital part of Sean McVay’s job. Clearly in 2018, they didn’t manage it well. It’s probably too far to suggest it cost them the Super Bowl, but only just. And the distance between that idea and reality is probably something close to the distance between Todd Gurley helping to decide the Rams’ future and a future in which he’s sitting on the sideline.After all, it’s a game of inches.