Rams QB Matthew Stafford placed on IR, potentially out for season

Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford is on injured reserve due to a lingering neck strain, the team announced Saturday.

That move means Stafford has to miss at least four games. The Rams are currently 3-8, with only six games remaining in their regular season.

Though the veteran quarterback began the year facing questions about the state of his damaged elbow, head and neck injuries have caused him the most trouble.

Stafford left a loss to the New Orleans Saints early after taking a sack, which prompted the team to evaluate him for a concussion. He missed two games in concussion protocol.

On Friday, Rams head coach Sean McVay announced that Stafford was cleared from concussion protocol, but wouldn’t start for the team’s Week 13 matchup with the Seattle Seahawks because of his neck.

“What we’ve got to figure out is with six games remaining, how much is he going to be available and what’s the best step for him?” McVay said on Friday.

McVay made it clear that the priority is Stafford’s health, even when he’s cleared medically from the neck strain.

“He can be upset with me, but I think he knows I have his best interest and we have his best interest [in mind],” McVay said. “And if that’s the case, then that’s definitely a possibility. But he’s going to want to play.”

If Stafford's season is indeed over, he finishes with 2,087 yards passing, 10 touchdowns and eight interceptions. That marks the fewest yards and touchdowns he’s had in a season where he played at least eight games.

The reigning Super Bowl champions are also missing stars Aaron Donald and Cooper Kupp, who are out with injuries, more reason to potentially not rush Stafford back for the final two games of a season that has not gone according to plan.

TAMPA, FL - NOVEMBER 6: Matthew Stafford #9 of the Los Angeles Rams warms up prior to an NFL football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium on November 6, 2022 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Kevin Sabitus/Getty Images)
Matthew Stafford's season with the Los Angeles Rams may be over. (Photo by Kevin Sabitus/Getty Images)