Todd Gurley seems like he's in a good mood.
The third-year running back has plenty of reason to be, as he and the Rams just completed strong first half of the season under first-year head coach Sean McVay. Not to mention Gurley has 1,024 yards from scrimmage and a league-leading 10 total touchdowns.
So while the running back — like his teammates — is keeping the one-game-at-a-time approach that's brought the Rams success, he's also making sure to enjoy the ride.
"Oh yeah — for sure," he said on Thursday.
Gurley had a few laugh-out-loud moments in his usual Thursday press conference, including when he shouted out the media in his explanation of the difference between a winning and losing season.
"You know when you're doing good – stuff is good. Everybody's good. Y'all are good. We're good," Gurley said, referring to the relationship between him and the media. "When you're doing bad, it's everybody's fault — my fault, his fault. And, hey, it kind of is everybody's fault, because you're doing bad," he added to a room full of laughter.
"But just to go through times like that and be able to be where we're at right now, definitely take it in for appreciation a lot more and you enjoy the moment, because you know how bad it is when you're down bad," Gurley continued. "So, it's always a good thing."
But there was plenty more. Like when Gurley was told he reached the fastest speed between himself, wide receiver Robert Woods, and wide receiver Sammy Watkins on their explosive plays last Sunday.
"I've been knowing that I'm faster than those guys, so I'm, not really worried about that," Gurley said with a laugh. "We're well aware of our speed and luckily Sunday we were able to showcase our speed little bit. So, that's always a good thing when you can get a player over 20 mph — that means he's probably running more than 30, 40 yards, so that's always a good thing for sure."
Or when Gurley was asked to describe how he feels about some of McVay's exotic play calls.
"I'm like, 'Aw, this ain't gonna work,'" Gurley laughed. "That's usually how that goes though man. I had that in college, we were running a counter-play and I'm like, 'I hate this play' and we run it and I go like 25 yards and I'm like, 'I love this play.'
"Yeah, [there's] plays like that all the time — runs, passes. I mean, even the Tavon [Austin] one [that] went to Cooper Kupp and then he pitched it back. And we're just like, 'Yeah right, this [is] the NFL,'" Gurley continued, describing the hitch and pitch L.A. ran last week against the Giants. "We have so much stuff in our offense, man. It's definitely hard to defend when you're doing stuff like that – you're doing jet sweeps, you're running with me, you're running with Tavon, you're running with everybody. So it's definitely hard to defend and they don't know what's coming at them. But, (there's) definitely a lot of plays like that."
But clearly, what McVay has called has worked — to the tune of Gurley recording 686 yards rushing and a league-leading seven rushing touchdowns, plus 29 receptions for 338 yards in the first half of the season. So what is Gurley looking to do in the final eight games of the regular season?
"I just want to keep being able to do what we've been doing," Gurley said. "[W]hatever we've been doing, it's been going well, so hopefully we can just keep doing what we've been doing."
"I think you want to see him consistently play at a high level," McVay said. "The challenge was, let's see if we can pop off a long run and he answered that bell right away with a plus 36-yard run on the first play of the game last week, which I thought provided us with a great spark."
"Todd is doing a lot of really good things right now," McVay continued. "He's playing as a complete back. It's never perfect and he'll be the first to tell you that he has high standards for himself and so do we for him. So, I think you want to see guys just consistently play at a high level and then continue to just clean up the little things."
The Rams have been remarkably healthy throughout the course of the year, and that includes Gurley. Now in his third season, the running back said his body is feeling fresh.
"It's a tough year, it's a long year, but it's been feeling pretty good," Gurley said. "It's been feeling really good actually."
And he'll need all the juice he can muster against a defensive front that is down a few stars — like lineman J.J. Watt and outside linebacker Whitney Mercilus — but still includes outside linebacker Jadeveon Clowney.
"Clowney is a beast. He's the No. 1 pick — No. 1 pick for a reason," Gurley said. "I played against him two years in college and I know what he can do – he can destroy a football game easily. He just makes it look so easy. Definitely a big challenge for us this week just being able to go up against him, but we face great players in this league week-in and week-out, but we're definitely going to have to be well aware of where he is at on the field for sure."