It was the first game Gurley missed since Week 2 when he was still recovering from the torn ACL he suffered in 2014. But the Rams didn't want to take any chances with Gurley after he battled a foot injury all week.
After the game, Rams coach Jeff Fisher offered a little more on the nature of Gurley's injury.
"So, just a little bit of detail on Todd and his status, he’s got a mild turf toe," Fisher said. "Nothing that’s going to set him back, nothing that’s going to be a problem for him, but we didn’t feel like it was necessary to mess with it and create the possibility where we could damage the joint a little bit more. So, we decided to hold him today.”
That was probably a wise decision considering that the Rams had nothing more than the chance to get to .500 on the line in this game. Despite holding Gurley out after he missed practice all week, he finished third in the NFL in rushing yards with 1,106. He also rushed for 10 touchdowns, good for a tie for fourth in the NFL and only one behind the three backs tied for first.
All of that production came in just 13 games, one of which was Gurley's debut where he was only getting his feet wet against Pittsburgh. Those numbers should be enough to land Gurley squarely in the conversation, along with Tampa Bay quarterback Jameis Winston and Oakland receiver Amari Cooper, for the Offensive Rookie of the Year award.
Even without Gurley against the 49ers, the Rams still managed to rush for 133 yards on 33 carries but 77 of those came on four runs, meaning the Rams averaged 1.93 yards on their other 29 carries. That's not enough to keep the chains moving on a consistent basis or put points on the board. That inability to keep moving forward was especially costly in overtime when the Rams went conservative before attempting a game-winning field goal that was eventually blocked.
“They’re a stout front," Fisher said. "Disregard their rankings, their rushing defense, they’re a stout front. They’re hard to move. When they anticipate run, they play it well. They’re sturdy. We ran the ball, and we had over 100 yards rushing. We had the big play by Benny Cunningham. It’s just hard. I’m just disappointed for them, because once Kenny [Britt] made the catch, we got down there and said, ‘Okay, let’s run three times and not give up any minus yards and kick the field goal and go home’ and we weren’t able to do it.”