The Rams held their final practice of the calendar year on Friday morning at Cal Lutheran. L.A. will host San Francisco on New Year's Eve to finish the regular season.
Check below for the the three top storylines from Friday's session:
L.A. had many of its players back on the field for Friday's practice after being sidelined for much of the week. Left tackle Andrew Whitworth (non-injury related), center John Sullivan (non-injury related), left guard Rodger Saffold (oblique), and wide receiver Cooper Kupp (knee) were all limited participants in the session.
Although Kupp did take some practice reps on Friday, he will be questionable in Week 17. Head coach Sean McVay said even if the Eastern Washington product is active, he will not play against the 49ers.
Linebacker Mark Barron (achilles) was the lone non-participant. He will be doubtful to participate on Sunday. Barron was held out of last week's win over the Titans and has not taken the practice field since. And unfortunately for the club, McVay said Friday that Barron's injury was one that could linger on into the playoffs.
"It's really all predicated on how he feels that day. This is something that you monitor day-to-day," he said. "I do
think that the weather plays a part in how his body feels."
"[But] hopefully next week when we start the playoffs, expecting the weather to continue to stay nice and that's when Mark has felt good. So, if that does affect it at all then you feel positive about that."
DAVIS EXCITED TO RETURN ON SUNDAY
Outside linebacker Matt Longacre (back) was officially placed on the injured reserve this afternoon. In a corresponding move, the Rams activated safety Cody Davis from injured reserve to the 53-man roster.
With the transaction complete, Davis is expected to participate in Sunday's regular season finale.
"He's looked good this week," McVay said. "Expect to get him out there and looking forward to having Cody back."
Davis was cleared for practice in Week 16 after being placed on injured reserve in early November. Prior to suffering a quad injury, the Texas Tech product had been an important contributor on both defense and special teams — recording an interception, two pass breakups, and 22 total tackles.
And after more than a month away, the safety was admittedly ready to get back on field at the Coliseum.
"I'm super excited and I just thank God for getting me through this process — recovered and back on the field with my teammates," Davis said. "Looking forward to contributing wherever I can."
Though the recovery process was not always easy for the safety — as he was unable to share directly in the club's late-season success — Davis did express his excitement at getting to rejoin his teammates as the team heads into the postseason.
"It's been tough," Davis said. "Super excited for the team for getting a division championship, but I am itching to
get back out there. It gets kind of lonely in the treatment room so to be back with the team and in the flow of things feels great. Hopefully will have some fresh legs, new excitement, and new energy out there."
GOFF, GURLEY OK WITH SITTING SUNDAY OUT
With the Rams locked into hosting a playoff game next weekend, McVay has elected to rest some of the club's key players on Sunday — including running back Todd Gurley and quarterback Jared Goff.
The young duo has been integral to the team's success in 2017.
Through 15 games, Goff's has completed 62.1 percent of his passes for 3,804 yards and just seven interceptions. The signal caller is also the first quarterback in franchise history to pass for 25 or more touchdowns and single-digit interceptions in a season.
Even though the Cal product said he doesn't "feel banged up or anything," he did agree that "a week off can never hurt, especially this late in the game."
"You count the four preseason games and then 15 games, [and] it can wear on you," he said. "But I think ultimately this is going to help guys that really take a beating. I've been kept pretty clean most of the year and guys like Todd — guys that really take that beating, it will really help them."
Gurley, has also been having a tremendous season. The 2017 MVP candidate leads the league with 19 touchdowns and is currently the NFL's leading rusher, amassing 1,305 yards. Though he, like Goff, has been fortunate on the injury front this season, the Georgia product said he was "cool" with taking a backseat on Sunday.
And instead of focusing on what could be if he were to start in Week 17, Gurley said his main objective this Sunday will be to support those stepping up in his place.
"The main goal this week is to just get all the young boys right and make sure we try to get that 12th win and they go out there and feel comfortable with everything," Gurley said. "Once next week comes, we'll figure out who we play and we just start focusing on them."