So maybe, when Todd Gurley allowed himself to be tackled rather than score a near-certain touchdown at the end of Sunday’s Rams-Packers game, you lost your fantasy football matchup. Or perhaps you lost a bet based on the game’s spread or its over/under.
Well, save your lamentation for someone other than Gurley. He definitely does not want to hear it.
“Man, forget fantasy and forget Vegas,” the Los Angeles running back said after his squad’s 29-27 victory over Green Bay. “We got the win, so that’s all that matters.”
Easy for him to say. For more than a few fantasy players, what mattered was the fact that he could have scored them six more points with a touchdown, which he passed up by slowing down as he neared the end zone with just under a minute left.
That was a smart decision for his team — it allowed the Rams to keep possession and safely kneel out the clock. It’s called the Rolex play for a reason, Peter King writes. It’s because, as Coach Sean McVay told him, “time is more important than the points. Time means everything there.” If Gurley had scored, Los Angeles would have been up eight with a chance to essentially ice the game by making an extra point, but there was the possibility that the kick could miss — Justin Tucker could tell you all about that — and who would have wanted to bet against Aaron Rodgers leading a last-second touchdown drive and tying the game with a two-point conversion?
As it was, plenty of people bet on the Rams covering what by game time was a 7.5-point spread at many Las Vegas sports books. A Gurley touchdown would have done the trick, and it would have pushed the game over its 57.5-point over/under figure.
But neither happened, causing what Todd Dewey, a sports betting reporter for Las Vegas Review-Journal, claimed to be a $1 million-plus swing at various casinos. Social media quickly filled with horror stories.
Gurley, though, proved that he was also capable of making social-media posts in the wake of his non-touchdown. The difference was that his dripped with derision for those who would dare complain about his game situation-savvy decision.
In reality, anyone who has had Gurley on a season-long fantasy team this year definitely has no right to squawk. The fourth-year back has been on an absolute tear, coming into the game leading the NFL with 956 yards from scrimmage and an absurd 14 touchdowns. He tacked on 195 more yards and another score against the Packers. “They should be happy about all the performances I gave them in the weeks before," Gurley told King. "They need to be humbled as well.”
So he’s been a massive help to fantasy squads, even if his focus has been solely, and properly, on his real-life team. As for anyone who lost a wager on Sunday because of Gurley’s decision to eschew a second touchdown, well, at least you have quite the bad-beat tale to tell.
Just don’t play the rueful raconteur while in the company of a certain L.A.-based running back.
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