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Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Gurley hopes to regain his form Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks

Rams running back Todd Gurley is brought down by the 49er defense as offensive lineman Greg Robinson tries to avoid him in the third quarter.
(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

Todd Gurley is not accustomed to slow starts.

In college, he rushed for at least 100 yards in each of his three season-opening games for Georgia.

In his first start for the Rams last season, in Week 4, he ran for 146.

The trend ended last week when the San Francisco 49ers shut down last season’s NFL offensive rookie of the year, limiting Gurley to 47 yards in 17 carries.

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So Gurley wants to regain his form on Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks at the Coliseum.

“Just stay with it, be patient,” he said Thursday. “I felt like some of the runs got busted up a little early. I feel like I was trying to do too much, or wasn’t patient enough in my reads.

“I’ve just got to stick to the game plan, and just know that everything is going to be fine, and we’re going to break one.”

The 49ers focused on stopping Gurley and dared the Rams to beat them with plays from quarterback Case Keenum and his receivers.

Keenum played poorly and receiver Tavon Austin, targeted 12 times, caught only four passes as the offense failed to reach the 49ers’ 20-yard-line.

“We just need to be in a position where we can keep feeding him,” Coach Jeff Fisher said of Gurley. “The two are tied together — Case makes a good decision, converts a third down, then we get another opportunity to hand the ball off to Todd.

“It’s all tied together.”

It won’t get easier against Seattle: The Seahawks led the NFL in rushing defense last season.

But the Rams defeated the Seahawks twice last season and have won three of their last four meetings.

Gurley did not play in the Rams’ 34-31 overtime victory at St. Louis last September. He rushed for 83 yards and touchdown in 19 carries in a 23-17 victory at Seattle in December.

The Seahawks feature run-stopping safety Kam Chancellor, who is expected to play close to the line of scrimmage in an attempt to stifle Gurley.

“They’re going to have Chancellor down in the box,” Gurley said.

“You have to respect a great player like him. Just stick to my reads, stick to the game plan, know my assignments, and just go from there.”

Quick hits

Cornerback Lamarcus Joyner (foot) was limited. Cornerback E.J. Gaines (thigh) and receivers Pharoh Cooper (shoulder) and Nelson Spruce (knee) did not practice.


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