Rams LB Travin Howard Reclaiming Athleticism Following 2020 Injury

Travin Howard

Getty Travin Howard goes for the pass breakup for the Los Angeles Rams during a December 2019 game against the Arizona Cardinals.

The Los Angeles Rams linebacker room dealt with several injuries last season, with only Leonard Floyd as the lone representative who didn’t miss the 16 games he started.

Travin Howard was among the injured – who suffered a torn meniscus before the 2020 season began.

Howard went from projected starter at one of the inside linebacker spots to injured reserve. But times have looked different for Howard. He’s not only healthy per reports from the first two days of training camp, but as his head coach Sean McVay blurted out first when asked about Howard on Thursday: “I’ve been really pleased with him,” which McVay dives into near the seven minute mark of the post practice presser.

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‘T Howard’ Known for Attacking with His Athleticism

Before his injury, Howard was expected to be a potential replacement for Cory Littleton.

Howard entered the league with a background as a safety from his Texas Christian University (TCU) days. But, Howard eventually moved to LB, where he ended his Horned Frogs career with three straight 100-tackle seasons. He went on to land All-Big 12 First Team honors in 2016 and 2017.

Along with attacking running backs, he’s revered on the Fort Worth campus for making these kind of game-altering plays.

Plus showed his pass rushing side when he came unscathed in a 2017 game against Kansas.

And, there was this ridiculous interception he pulled off.

Before his meniscus injury, Howard drew raves from Pro Football Focus writer Sosa Kremenjas for his closing speed and human wrecking ball mentality. Kremenjas of PFF became one fan of his play with this tweet.

But Kremenjas also made light of Howard’s safety past, which came in handy on this coverage look.

Howard Reclaiming His Bounce

Howard injured his knee at the Rams’ Cal Lutheran training site in Thousand Oaks. He told Rams reporter J.B. Long that he “didn’t really know what it was” when he felt his knee unravel.

“It was a step I’ve always done. It was a regular step,” Howard recalled with Long in the May 28 interview. “I was running…and my knee popped. I didn’t think it was that bad, I just thought it was a little knick. I kind of shook it off and then I actually played the next period, like four plays, but I couldn’t really move like that.”

Howard then said that the team’s top sports medicine and performance doctor Reggie Scott took a look at his knee, then informed Howard it was a torn meniscus, eventually wiping away Howard’s 2020 season.

Rams Revealed Ep. 64: Travin Howard on his road back from a season-ending injuryRams Linebacker Travin Howard joins J.B. Long to discuss his season-ending knee injury last season, what it’s been like getting back on the field for OTAs, and how much he’s looking forward to playing at SoFi Stadium this season. Subscribe to the LA Rams Channel: bit.ly/3d9IrHe For More Exclusive Content follow the Rams: Twitter: twitter.com/ramsnfl…2021-05-28T15:00:20Z

Howard is back competing in a crowded, more healthier linebacking core. Yet, McVay says he likes what he’s seen as Howard continues his march to play this fall.

“You felt so bad for him last year because he was doing so many good things. Really liked the look in his eye,” McVay said. “He’s out here, he’s got a good bounce in his step. I think he’s really done a nice job of continuing to progress. As a whole, that group, you look at the experience. ‘T-Howard’ is doing a great job, I want him to stay healthy.”

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