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  1. #1
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    Feisty Rams' motto: "We're not done yet"

    Feisty Rams' motto: "We're not done yet"
    By Bryan Burwell
    Of the Post-Dispatch

    SEATTLE - At the end of this mind-blowing, uplifting, heart-pounding, totally delirious Sunday afternoon, the only thing left to do was to add a little insult to injury. So there was the normally placid Isaac Bruce, out there in the middle of the formerly raucous, but suddenly silent Qwest Field, gleefully assuming the surprising role of the audacious agitator.

    Mere moments after Shaun McDonald had raced into the end zone with the game-winning 52-yard touchdown catch and the Rams had completed this exhilarating 33-27 sudden-death victory over the Seattle Seahawks, Bruce went racing across the field, laughing and shouting like a man possessed. He held his blue-and-gold helmet high in the air, pumping it fast and furiously (ah, there goes that phrase again), until he reached the 10-yard line near Qwest Field's southern end zone seats.

    It was there that Bruce could look out and see all the bewildered faces of these stunned Seahawks players and fans. They held their heads in despair. They slumped in their seats in disbelief. They pounded the stadium walls in frustration, or just milled around like lifeless zombies.

    So Bruce knew exactly what he had to do. He defiantly pounded his helmet onto the ground like he was some daring explorer and this tomblike building and all he surveyed was his conquered land.

    "We're STILL the (NFC West) division champs!" Bruce screamed, thumping his chest, waving his fist and shouting to the heavens. "You ain't won NUTHIN' YET!"

    This was the message of the day - maybe even the message of the entire season. Don't bury the Rams just yet. Before anyone in the NFC West starts planning any funerals for the Rams, who have won three of the past five division titles, it would be strongly advised to kill them first. And as this improbable come-from-behind victory showed, deposing the Rams won't be all that easy.

    "This is the kind of victory that can be a springboard for us," said Tyoka Jackson, as the Rams defensive captain hobbled around the visitors' locker room with a strained hamstring. "This is the kind of victory that can start us on another one of those runs we've been known to have."

    For most of the day, the Rams had played like a team on the verge of being banished into that dark and ugly athletic netherworld where has-beens and deposed champions go to die. For most of the day, the Seahawks played like the pre-season Super Bowl favorites most of the football world had them pegged to be. The Seahawks had rolled to a dominating 27- 10 third-quarter lead, and appeared to be on their way to their fourth victory of the season without a defeat.

    By halftime, it sure did look like the Seahawks were ready to finally stake their claim as the new kings of the NFC West hill, and emphatically shove the Rams right into the abyss. "You could feel it; you could see it out there that those guys thought they had the game in their hands," said defensive end Leonard Little. "You could see by the way they came to the line of scrimmage. It was their attitude. It was like, 'Yeah, we got this.' Well I guess they didn't, huh? It became a matter of what Coach Martz has been preaching to us all year. Resolve. He told us that we had a resolve in us that he could see. And this was the time for us to prove him right and we did."

    Call it resolve. Call it character. But victory like this showed us all that there's something here inside this Rams team that none of us saw before. Perhaps it's the lingering spirit of championships past, or better yet, the building spirit of championships to come.

    However you define it, when a team finds something deep down in its gut and finds a way to overtake an unbeaten, heavily favored foe on the road inside a rowdy stadium filled with a record crowd of 66,940 bellowing spectators, it bears attention. What we saw out here in the Great Northwest was the first sign that the Rams actually have what it takes to stay on top in the NFC West.

    This game wasn't about running or passing, balanced attacks or fast and furious ones. It was about the embattled Mike Martz never panicking. But it was also about his players making so many clutch plays when the rest of the world thought they were dead and buried.

    Perhaps it began at the start of the third quarter, when the Rams trailing 24-7, and most of Rams Nation holding its breath wondering how quickly Martz would lose his patience and start throwing the ball on every down.

    But on that first drive of the third quarter, Martz called five consecutive running plays and four more out of the first 11 plays from scrimmage. Even though the Rams failed to score on that first possession, it sent a message loud and clear.

    "It said to us that there was no panic," Jackson said. "It said to us that Coach Martz knew we could still win this game. And it said that it was time for us to start making plays."

    After the Seahawks took a 27-10 lead, the big plays came cascading from every direction for the Rams, beginning with an amazing leaping TD grab by tight end Brandon Manunaleuna to cut the lead to 27-17. The defense stepped up, forcing Seattle into a three-and-out offensive series. Then McDonald made his first big play of the game with a 39-yard punt return, followed by another Bulger TD pass to Kevin Curtis. And in the space of 2 1/2 minutes the Rams went from barely breathing to breathing hot and heavy down the flailing Seahawks' necks.

    Throw in a Little sack and a Jeff Wilkins field goal and the game was into overtime. And by then, the doubt had firmly set into the heads of the Seahawks. "When we got that field goal," said Torry Holt, a Cheshire-cat grin spreading wide across his face, "you could see their whole sidelines all doing the same thing. They all said, '(expletive).' That's when you knew the doubt had set in."

    A few minutes later, the game was over, and Holt was standing next to Bruce, joining in the defiant celebration. "All we wanted these folks to understand was that the crown is still on OUR heads, not theirs," Holt said. "I don't know if they thought we were too old or too young, but I think they know one thing for sure. We're not done yet. Not even close."

  2. #2
    LaRamsFanLongTime Guest

    Re: Feisty Rams' motto: "We're not done yet"

    DAMN this feels good, really good. I cannot beleive it.

  3. #3
    PandaRam Guest

    Re: Feisty Rams' motto: "We're not done yet"

    "We're STILL the (NFC West) division champs!" "You Ain't Won Nuttin Yet!"
    We'll that just says it all right there doesn't it! To all u hawks fans who think you're gonna steal our title... let today's game be a lesson for you! The Rams are, and always will be "The Best Show on Turf!"

  4. #4
    sbramfan Guest

    Re: Feisty Rams' motto: "We're not done yet"

    The reports of our demise have been greatly exaggerated.

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