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Todd Gurley, after speaking his mind Sunday, has little to say in wake of Coach Jeff Fisher's firing

Todd Gurley, after speaking his mind Sunday, has little to say in wake of Coach Jeff Fisher's firing
Rams running back Todd Gurley storms up and down the sideline during the first half against the Falcons on Dec. 11. (Shotgun Spratling / Los Angeles Times)

Todd Gurley's words reverberated throughout the NFL and, closer to home, the Rams' locker room.

That was Sunday.

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On Monday, a day after the running back said that the Rams had run "a middle school offense" and that some teammates were "just going through the motions" during a 42-14 loss against the Atlanta Falcons, Coach Jeff Fisher was fired.

This time there were few words from Gurley, leading to a different kind of reverberation.

A first-year team captain and last season's NFL offensive rookie of the year, Gurley declined to speak with the media Monday during an open locker room session after practice.

He sat at a teammate's locker at the Rams' Thousand Oaks training facility and refused to take questions. He then moved to his own locker and snapped at reporters to move away, that he wouldn't talk to them and that they could "tweet that."

Gurley's teammates were aware of his postgame comments. Quarterback Jared Goff was asked if Gurley's words contributed to Fisher's firing.

"I don't think that had anything to do with Coach Fisher," Goff said. "I think Todd was emotional. We all are. We're all frustrated. … It was something he made in the heat of the moment."

Kevin Demoff, the Rams' chief operating officer and vice president for football operations, said the decision was "solely a performance-related issue" with the team 4-9 and suffering lopsided losses in their last three games. But Gurley's comments could not have helped.

Gurley rushed for 61 yards and a touchdown in 16 carries against the Falcons. He has expressed frustration throughout the season about the offense's inability to help the defense.

Defensive players said they were not going through the motions.

"Maybe on that side of the ball," end William Hayes said. "On our side, I know for sure, we sold out every snap. That's not throwing a shot at the offense, just being honest with you. I know for a fact that that … ain't tolerated over here."

Safety T.J. McDonald, when asked about Gurley's comments, acknowledged a sense of disappointment about the Rams' season. But not the effort.

"I know one thing about this team is that we come to work every week with a positive attitude, ready to work and ready to grind," he said. "For whatever reason, it just didn't work out."

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