The difference between Matthew Stafford throwing in individual drills, but not team drills

Los Angeles Rams Training Camp
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Rams coach Sean McVay is doing his best to glass-half-full his way through the elbow issue that’s still hindering quarterback Matthew Stafford. Fans and media inclined to view the current reality through bone-colored glasses have plenty of objective evidence to rely on.

Stafford is still throwing in individual drills. And he’s throwing well. So why is he able to throw in individual drills but not in team drills?

Chris Simms explained it this week on PFT Live. Team drills entail a higher level of intensity and competitiveness. There’s a greater urgency to zip the ball through the windows, to throw it harder. Which puts more stress on the elbow, triggering more pain.

Stafford reportedly has “bad tendinitis.” McVay has admitted that it’s a baseball-type injury. It’s clear that they’re still figuring out what it really is. Which obviously makes it harder to treat it.

So, yes, Stafford is still able to throw through his pain. But the team knows not to put him in situations that will result in even more stress being applied to the elbow. In 33 days, he’ll presumably take the field and put maximum stress on an arm that he uses in all sorts of angles and motions. If the Rams don’t have the situation figured out by then, playing in games won’t make it any better.

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