Because of elbow rehab, will Rams’ Matthew Stafford really be ready to throw by camp?

Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford, right, talks to receivers Cooper Kupp (10) and  Lance McCutcheon during practice Wednesday
Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford, right, talks to receivers Cooper Kupp (10) and Lance McCutcheon during practice Wednesday. Stafford has not thrown any passes during spring practices.
(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

He surveyed the defense at the line of scrimmage hundreds of times. Took countless snaps. Dropped back, planted his feet and shifted his hips as if preparing to throw a pass.

And despite completing two months of offseason workouts without throwing the ball once, Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford said Wednesday he would be ready when the defending Super Bowl champions report for training camp in July.

“I still have a lot of work to do physically just to get ready to go, and feel like I’m entering camp in peak position to go out there and play at a high level,” Stafford said.


Shortly after leading the Rams to a Super Bowl victory over the Cincinnati Bengals, Stafford received an injection to address right-elbow soreness that plagued him throughout the season.

The rehabilitation program that discouraged Stafford from throwing passes — coupled with an abbreviated offseason because of the Super Bowl run — were factors in coach Sean McVay’s decision to conduct what were essentially jog-throughs during offseason workouts and a minicamp that will end Thursday with a team meeting.

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During 12 seasons with the Detroit Lions, Stafford went through periods of inactivity because of injuries. Mental reps are valuable, he said, but apparently not enough for a quarterback who has passed for nearly 50,000 career yards during the regular season.

“There’s plenty to be gained,” he said of mental reps. “It’s just less fun for me when I don’t get to do the one thing that I like to do, which is throw the ball.”

Last season, Stafford passed for 41 touchdowns, with 17 interceptions, during the regular season. In four postseason victories, he passed for nine touchdowns, with three interceptions.

Stafford engineered a last-minute victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in an NFC divisional-round victory. In the 23-20 Super Bowl victory over the Bengals, he completed 26 of 40 passes for 283 yards and three touchdowns, with two interceptions.


Stafford’s touchdown pass to receiver Cooper Kupp with 1 minute 25 seconds remaining proved to be the game-winning points.

Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford signals as running back Cam Akers (3) listens to coach Sean McVay.
Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford signals as running back Cam Akers (3) listens to coach Sean McVay.
(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

The Rams will go into training camp with a receiving corps that includes Kupp — the NFL offensive player of the year — new addition Allen Robinson, third-year pro Van Jefferson and second-year pros Tutu Atwell and Ben Skowronek. Odell Beckham Jr. remains a free agent.

Stafford said he was able to communicate well with Robinson, and was looking forward to throwing passes to him and other teammates during summer workouts before training camp.

“It’s the great thing about being in Southern California — everybody wants to be here anyways,” he said. “It will be great to be able to get out there and get some work with some of those guys as I kind of get myself ready to go.”

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The goal is to be ready for the start of training camp at UC Irvine in late July, when the Rams begin preparations for their Sept. 8 opener against the Buffalo Bills at SoFi Stadium.


“I’m just trying to make sure that we’re smart, but at the same time be as ready to go as I can possibly be come Day 1 when we’re out there throwing the ball around,” he said.

McVay is not concerned that Stafford did not throw passes during offseason workouts and minicamp.

“He was coaching guys up and doing a great job of being able to kind of observe,” McVay said.

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New offensive coordinator Liam Coen said he was looking forward to seeing Stafford perform in a regular practice setting.

“But it’s been really good to kind of get to know him a little bit on the side when he isn’t taking those reps,” Coen said. “I’ve been able to kind of see things through his lens … and talk through some concepts.”


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