Injuries and load management have been a big topic of conversation for the Los Angeles Rams early on this season. While mainly focused on Todd Gurley and the health of his knees, a few other players have been injured so far in the first three weeks.
The team was without a pair of offensive starters in their Week 3 win over the Cleveland Browns and right guard Austin Blythe has been dealing with a sprained ankle and tight end Tyler Higbee suffered a bruised lung.
Both players were injured during the Rams’ Week 2 win over the New Orleans Saints, however, all along the team has maintained that neither injury was all that serious.
It appears that is the case as head coach Sean McVay confirmed on Friday that both Blythe and Higbee will be returning to the field for this Sunday’s Week 4 matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, via Lindsey Thiry of ESPN:
Sean McVay says all of his players are available to play Sunday, which means the return of TE Tyler Higbee and RG Austin Blythe.
— Lindsey Thiry (@LindseyThiry) September 27, 2019
Jamil Demby started for Blythe and Gerald Everett started for Higbee against the Browns. Both had decent games, with Everett grabbing two receptions for 15 yards.
With both Blythe and Higbee returning to the starting lineup, the Rams will have a full roster against the Buccaneers. On the other hand, Tampa is dealing with its fair share of injuries, most notably starting linebacker and No. 5 overall pick in 2019, Devin White, expected to miss the game with an MCL sprain.
Having Blythe back in the starting lineup also could help keep Jared Goff better protected. It should be interesting for many returning members of the offensive line as they will be facing off against former Rams defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh.
Higbee has been having a solid season so far. He has totaled six receptions for 41 yards, one touchdown and three first downs. Having Higbee back will give Goff yet another option and provide some additional blocking power for Todd Gurley.
Being healthy is important for any team, but the Rams, in particular, have been able to keep their key players on the field the last couple seasons, which has been a huge key for their success.
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