The former Los Angeles Rams star running back reached out to the newest Ram running back via text, Michel told the L.A. media on the early afternoon of Thursday, August 26, in his first press conference with reporters since the trade.
“That’s my guy. Me and Todd, we talk,” Michel said at the Thousand Oaks facility, which can be heard near the 9:30 mark of the video below. “He sent me a text similar to that tweet. He kept it simple, congratulated me on the move. I’m sure he knows what kind of system I’m coming into, so thought that was pretty cool.”
Gurley Has Remained in L.A.
Even though Gurley’s last NFL stop was in Atlanta and he’s still awaiting a phone call from a team needing a running back, Gurley remains active in the City of Angeles.
At 8:38 a.m. PT, the USC football Twitter account revealed he was a special guest at a recent practice. Gurley sent a message to the team.
“Don’t compare your success to no one else,” Gurley first began. “Because you never know when your opportunities going to come. I enjoyed every bit of playing in the NFL and in college. But now, I get to see and enjoy my brothers playing. It’s a blessing for me.
“But you never know: You might be a starter today or your might try to be a starter 10 years from now.”
Gurley then got a chance to snap photos with Trojan coaches and players.
Before pulling up to USC practice and surprising the Trojans, Gurley got the chance to take in the 2021 Major League Soccer (MLS) All-Star game held in L.A.
Gurley’s last five NFL games ended in disaster: Not surpassing 20 rushing yards and getting held out of the end zone. Plus, after scoring nine touchdowns through the first nine games with the Atlanta Falcons, Gurley never crossed the goal line the rest of the way.
However, Gurley still has his backers – from Michel to former Rams team reporter turned Bally’s Sports reporter/personality Sarina Morales, who posted video of her support of Gurley here. Another Gurley backer? Current Rams linebacker Micah Kiser.
Michel Going Through ‘Sudden Change’
Obviously, Michel is the latest former Georgia Bulldog who will take handoffs with the Rams.
The last UGA representative Gurley ran for more than 856 yards each of his five seasons and earned three-Pro Bowl appearances in his Ram days before heading to the Falcons.
In typical NFL trade fashion, Michel has witnessed things come at him at a whirlwind speed. However, he used a gridiron analogy to describe this period of his life.
“Last two days kind of just been, the best way I can put it is football terminology, sudden change,” Michel said. “It’s like, something suddenly happens and you just got to get ready to kind of execute. Not much time could be wasted. Just kind of got to get up, get ready to go and kind of get adjusted, acclimated with the new adjustment.”
Michel didn’t practice on his first day with the Rams as the day was spent watching how they work. However, he came away impressed by how the offense worked in unison.
“What intrigues me is some of the guys that’s on the offense,” Michel said. “Starting with the quarterback and the leadership. The running back room and how they compete and communicate on the sidelines. The receivers, I was watching them a little bit in how they execute some of their routes and their route detail. And the offensive line, most importantly, and watching how they communicate and do their assignments.”
Michel will have speed up his learning curve with the Rams playbook, saying “That’s my goal: To dive in and learn as much as I can and try to stay on it and just keep learning.” But he’s not coming in applying too much pressure on himself as he now becomes the newest UGA standout to get acquainted in L.A.
“I’m going to try to be the best version of me. Whatever they need me to do, I want to do it as best as I can,” Michel said.