Matthew Stafford did not throw a pass during the Rams‘ first day of OTAs. The reason, according to head coach Sean McVay, was because Stafford received an anti-inflammatory shot in his right elbow for an issue he had during the 2021 season. McVay said it is unlikely that Stafford will throw during OTAs, which will run through June 2.
Stafford said Monday that he isn’t sure if he will attempt to throw during minicamp, which will run from June 7-9. The veteran quarterback had to spend time this offseason in a brace and sling after receiving the injection in March.
“We’re taking it a day at a time right now, but the goal and the thought process was that he’ll start to ramp that up when we get closer to training camp,” McVay said, via The Athletic. “He’s able to communicate with us in how he’s feeling. But the plan all along has been, ‘Let’s really stress above-the-neck and things that we can control, but be smarter than anything else with him, especially with his experience and his ability to communicate with us.'”
Several other Rams who are working their way back from injury worked either in the training room or individually during Monday’s session. Among those players include running back Darrell Henderson, receiver Van Jefferson, cornerback Jordan Fuller, linebacker Leonard Floyd and running back Cam Akers. One notable player who did take part in Monday’s team sessions was tight end Tyler Higbee, who is coming back from knee surgery that was performed in March.
Stafford enjoyed a highly-successful first season in Los Angeles. Last fall, the longtime Detroit Lion completed a career-high 67.2% of his passes for 4,886 yards and 41 touchdowns. His play helped the Rams go 12-5 during the regular season that included an NFC West division title.
In the playoffs, Stafford was even better. He went 4-0 in the postseason while completing 70% of his throws with nine touchdowns against just three interceptions. In Super Bowl LVI, Stafford threw the game-winning score to Cooper Kupp in the game’s final minutes as the Rams posted a 23-20 victory over the Bengals.
Stafford is again set up for success in 2022. While Robert Woods departed for Tennessee this offseason, the Rams have high hopes for Allen Robinson, a former Pro Bowler who has acclimated quickly to McVay’s offense.
“His football aptitude is incredible,” Kupp said of Robinson. “His willingness to spend the time here and learning this thing. … He doesn’t want to just know the offense, he wants to understand the offense. There’s a difference between knowing what to do and knowing how to do it. He wants to know how to do it, and how to do it as efficiently as possible and as effectively as possible. I’ve got great appreciation for that.
“You get guys out here in walkthrough who feel like, ‘Hey, my job on a hitch route, I just need to run a hitch.’ But for A-Rob, it’s understanding all the nuance about it.”