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Sean McVay suggests Rams will use 49ers approach at running back position

Sean McVay, Rams

The Los Angeles Rams are looking to take a page out of the San Francisco 49ers playbook for the upcoming season. Rams head coach Sean McVay worked under 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan when they were both on Washington’s coaching staff. McVay realized that an offense that the 49ers are running can benefit his team as well.

The 49ers maximized their tailbacks and utilized the running game as often as they could. The team gained more rushing yards than any team other than the Ravens en route to an NFC title last season. The secret? They did it by splitting the lead back role between ball carriers Tevin Coleman, Raheem Mostert, and Matt Breida over the course of the season.

Todd Gurley spent the last five seasons as the lead back for the Rams, but he’s in Atlanta now and Malcolm Brown, Darrell Henderson, John Kelly, and rookie Cam Akers are vying for backfield work this season.

On a podcast appearance with Dan Hellie, McVay said he’d like things to work out the same way they did for the Niners:

“I think it’ll naturally just work itself out,” McVay said. “You look at that success San Fran had last year with that running back-by-committee approach, what I thought Kyle and their players did a great job of is, ‘Hey, we’re going to have an open-mind approach, we’re going to be committed to trying to have some balance and then we’ll go with the hot hand or whoever really expresses himself as deserving of the carries.’”

When the two division rivals match up in the upcoming season, McVay and the rest of his Rams’ squad are looking to give the 49ers a taste of their own medicine.

Before that, the rebranded Rams will be welcoming the Dallas Cowboys in town for their first game in the newly-built SoFi Stadium on September 14.