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GM Thomas Dimitroff: Falcons 'very comfortable' with health of RB Todd Gurley

Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Gurley saw a decrease in playing time last season due to knee issues. File Photo by Nell Redmond/UPI
Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Gurley saw a decrease in playing time last season due to knee issues. File Photo by Nell Redmond/UPI | License Photo

April 7 (UPI) -- Atlanta Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff believes three-time Pro Bowler Todd Gurley will pass his upcoming physical with the team despite concerns about the condition of the running back's left knee.

The Los Angeles Rams released Gurley, the 2017 NFL Offensive Player of the Year, last month to create additional salary-cap space. Before his release, the tailback faced numerous questions about the status of his knee.

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The Rams' front office never confirmed reports about Gurley, 25, having arthritis in the left knee, which was surgically repaired in 2014.

"He really takes care of his body well, and he'll continue to work on it," Dimitroff said Tuesday, according to the Falcons' official website. "We'll continue to be very mindful about what we are dealing with. We feel very comfortable with it. ... He's a hard-charging runner, and he's an excellent football player.

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"We have language in our contracts that are going to protect us and a player. If a player comes and has an issue that he might not pass a physical, then that's something we will address then. We're not looking at it that way [of Gurley possibly failing a physical]."

Gurley, who signed a four-year, $60 million extension with the Rams before the 2018 campaign, officially agreed to a one-year, $6 million deal with the Falcons on Monday. The agreement is still pending a physical, which has been temporarily prevented because of NFL rules related to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Falcons pursued Gurley after releasing two-time Pro Bowl tailback Devonta Freeman. The team's current group of running backs includes Gurley, Ito Smith, Qadree Ollison and Brian Hill.

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Gurley, whose usage was down from 2018 due to the knee issue, rushed for a career-low 857 yards in 15 regular-season games in 2019.

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