Why the Rams aren’t worried. Why fans are.

The LA Rams are the pioneers of the NFL. This is often a good thing. Sometimes this can pose unique challenges.

Day by day. This is how an NFL player leads his NFL career. It’s the ultimate conflict between performance and injury. It’s the athlete’s attempt to push their body to its limits, but not to cross that precipice of crippling soft tissue with partial or full tears, overuse, or even hyperextensions.

Sports training is a process of regimented repetition. A concise set of actions that are performed over and over again. Thus trained, the athlete’s body comes to the point where the body is so accustomed to acting in this way that it no longer needs the concentration of the brain. It becomes automatic, a reflex action, an “I can do this in my sleep” movement.

But it is this same repetitive movement, again and again for hours, days, weeks, months and years that wears down the human form. People were designed to move in many ways, not just repeatedly. That’s why baseball pitchers have developed unique diseases that require new technologies and medical strategies to fix them.

Now, it looks like the same kind of baseball-like elbow injury is starting to show signs of illness for LA Rams starting quarterback Matthew Stafford. Here’s a recent press conference from Rams head coach Sean McVay and quarterback Matthew Stafford:

Notice how the conversation about the lingering pain in Matthew Stafford’s throwing elbow becomes a challenge to even reference? Is it a baseball elbow? A football elbow? Well, we know it’s a sore elbow.

The fact is, pain exists for an NFL player and is part of the journey of an NFL quarterback. The problem is, the pain exists in Rams QB Matthew Stafford’s throwing elbow, and the arm and player just got extended on a multi-year contract. A long-term relationship, committed by both the team and the player. But these are the LA Rams, and the pain in an offensive star’s joints has happened before.

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