Rams quarterback Stafford is dealing with 'abnormal' elbow pain

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Rams head coach Sean McVay with quarterback Matthew Stafford
Rams head coach Sean McVay with quarterback Matthew Stafford

Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay said Thursday that the continuing elbow pain quarterback Matthew Stafford is experiencing is unusual for a football player, comparing it to what baseball pitchers often deal with.  

Stafford has been skipping the Rams’ full-team portions of training camp practices and instead has been throwing in individual drills and 7-on-7 setups. The Super Bowl-winning quarterback dealt with an elbow injury last season and received an injection in the affected area during the offseason. 

''It's a little bit abnormal for a quarterback,'' McVay said Thursday. ''Some of this stuff is things that MLB pitchers deal with, so it is something that we're kind of learning about on the fly with his feedback.'' 

While McVay stressed that Stafford could probably play in a game this week, the Rams clearly are trying to figure out how to keep him healthy for the season and are being careful not to overtax his arm. 

"We want to try to have him operate in as little pain as possible,'' McVay said. ''I think anytime that you've played as long and are as tough as he is, I don't know if you're ever truly pain-free, but the goal would be for September 8, and really looking towards 17 games, then hopefully some games after that, if we earn that opportunity. 

"That's kind of the perspective and the big-picture approach that we want to be able to take. I don't know that I would feel as comfortable taking that approach if it wasn't for the experience that he's accumulated.'' 

Stafford, 34, played in all 17 regular-season games in 2021 and then played four postseason games, leading the Rams to their first Super Bowl title since returning from St. Louis. He finished with 4,886 passing yards and 41 touchdowns in the regular season, his first with Los Angeles after 12 in Detroit.  

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