Georgia Bulldogs star running back Todd Gurley returned in Saturday's win over Auburn following a four-game suspension. Unfortunately, he exited the SEC showdown in the fourth quarter and has now been ruled out for the remainder of the 2014 season with a torn ACL in his left knee.
WSB sports director Zach Klein initially reported that Gurley had suffered a torn ACL against Auburn, and that news was confirmed Sunday:
Gurley offered a quick comment on his situation via Twitter:
Bleacher Report's Matt Miller weighed in on how the injury will impact Gurley's draft stock:
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Bleacher Report expert Dave Siebert offered his opinion on the situation:
Gurley ran for 911 yards and nine touchdowns on just 123 carries this year. He is among the most gifted players at his position in recent memory.
Before the injury, had the all-purpose playmaker declared for the 2015 NFL draft, he had a real chance to be the first running back selected in the first round since 2012. Now the future is a lot murkier for Gurley, whose draft stock will likely drop drastically, as the injury may cost him his entire rookie campaign in the pros.
It's better to take the rehabilitation process slowly, though. Running backs have become so interchangeable that it takes a transcendent talent to emerge as a surefire feature back. Gurley has the tools to be just that when healthy.
Whenever he does return to the gridiron, the Georgia star figures to enjoy plenty of successful playing days ahead as long as his knee holds up.
The Bulldogs have the backfield depth to absorb Gurley's loss for the remainder of the year, particularly with stud freshman Nick Chubb in the fold, but NFL teams will have to take a longer look the junior before they consider investing a valuable draft pick in him.