The Atlanta Falcons have utilized Todd Gurley less and less the past few weeks. Expect that trend to continue over the next two games.
Atlanta interim head coach Raheem Morris confirmed this afternoon that Ito Smith is the team’s top runner at the moment. Smith carried six times for 24 yards in yesterday’s 31-27 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, while Brian Hill rushed five times for minus-two yards and Gurley carried once for a loss of one.
The Falcons threw the ball 49 of 62 plays on Sunday. Gurley, Hill and Smith each caught two passes, with Gurley tallying the most receiving yards (15) of the bunch.
Signed to a contract last offseason, Gurley served as Atlanta’s primary ball carrier through the first nine weeks of the season, never playing less than 45 percent of snaps in a game. However, after the team’s Week 10 bye, his role began to change.
Raheem Morris says Todd Gurley’s role has changed. Morris said Ito Smith is the lead runner right now. #Falcons
— Kelsey Conway (@FalconsKelsey) December 21, 2020
Gurley played only 23 snaps in Week 11, and then missed Week 12 with a knee injury. He received 22 snaps in his Week 13 return before playing 19 snaps in Week 14 and 16 yesterday.
In total, Gurley has rushed for 644 yards and nine touchdowns on the season. We’ll see how much the three-time Pro Bowler gets to do in Atlanta’s last two games of the year.