The Rams deciding to exercise the fifth-year options of running back Todd Gurley and cornerback Marcus Peters on Tuesday should hardly come as a surprise. Both players are among the best in the league and have the statistics and accolades to prove it.
Gurley has recorded 4,599 yards from scrimmage and 35 total touchdowns — including a league-leading 2,093 yards from scrimmage and 19 total touchdowns in 2017 — since entering the league in 2015. And Peters has recorded a league-high 19 regular-season interceptions in his three seasons as a pro.
Nevertheless, general manager Les Snead and Sean McVay explained the rationale behind both moves during their joint pre-draft press conference on Tuesday.
"Todd speaks for himself right? What he's done since he's been here, especially — let's call it — his rookie and this year," Snead said. "So, that's the reason we went into exercising his fifth-year option. And when we made the trade for Marcus, we do foresee a long-term future with him. So, we were definitely going to check that box as well."
"You feel very fortunate to have had a year working with Todd. I continue to come away with just the consistency at which he approaches every single day," McVay said. "Obviously, the talent is there. But I think [there's also an] appreciation for the practice, the meeting room, all those things — what a smart and special player he is. So, excited to continue to be able to work with him and wanted to be able to do that."
While McVay has not coached Peters for nearly as long as he has Gurley, the head coach has still come away impressed with what he's observed from the cornerback in the offseason program to this point.
"[R]eally in the week and a half now that we've been around Marcus, couldn't be more impressed with just his attention to detail in the meetings, listening to him talk with coach Pleasant and coach Evero in the meetings," McVay said, referring to cornerbacks coach Aubrey Pleasant and safeties coach Ejiro Evero. "You can see this is a guy that loves football. … He's doing all the little things the right way right now."