By Stu Jackson, theRams.com
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – The 2022 offseason program and organized team activities were not enjoyable for Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford.
He didn’t throw a single pass during that time period, and, as someone who likes to do that, was frustrated with not being able to do much, or what we wanted to do.
The 2023 offseason program, however, will be a more normal experience for him – something he’s looking forward to.
“Obviously going to do everything I can to try to be as healthy as I can at all times,” Stafford said. “Probably not a human JUGS machine like I used to be, but I can still get it out there and throw it around a bunch. So it’ll be a process as it always is to try and stay as healthy as you possibly can at all times, but I definitely feel like I can go out there and compete and do everything I want to do, which is fun and exciting for me.”
Stafford didn’t throw a pass during 2022 OTAs and dealt with an ensuing pitch count in training camp as part of a plan to manage elbow pain that McVay in training camp last year described as something Major League Baseball pitchers deal with.
Stafford on Monday was focused on looking and moving forward, though – he said did not want to talk about “what he used to be” or “how I used to feel.”
“All I know is that I’ve put a lot of work and time into trying to feel as good as I can for right now,” Stafford said. “I do feel about as good I can for right now, and it’s exciting for me. It was a lot of hard work, some tough times, and just excited to be where I am right now.”
Stafford said he had been throwing with teammates “a decent amount” leading up to the start of the offseason program. With that program now underway, the most exciting part for him is how refreshed he feels.
“Just building the relationships with coaches, players, whoever it is, just being able to spend time with those guys, be in a good headspace as far as how I’m feeling, what I’m able to accomplish when I’m here all those kinds of things,” Stafford said. “That puts me in a good mood, gets me excited to be here and helps me make sure that my attitude, my energy level is at the correct place every single time I come in here. And I feel like it’s there right now.”
Despite the injuries he dealt with during the 2022 regular season, Stafford emphasized that he felt “really confident” he was coming back and was ready to go play as soon as he was cleared.
“I’m not 25,” he said jokingly, “but I definitely feel good.”