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Rams Top 10 of the Decade

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  • Rams Top 10 of the Decade

    12.11.2009 12:33 am
    Rams Top 10 of the Decade
    By Jim Thomas
    St. Louis Post-Dispatch
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    No area team had as many ups and downs during the decade as the St. Louis Rams:

    BEST SEASON OPENER, Sept. 4, 2000

    The Gateway City hadn’t played host to Monday Night Football for 14 seasons, or since Bill Bidwill and the Big Red called St. Louis home. But with Commissioner Paul Tagliabue on hand, the defending Super Bowl-champion Rams won a 41-36 track meet over Denver. The Rams scored three TDs of 72 yards or longer. One of them, an 80-yard catch and run by Az-Zahir Hakim, became a signature play of the Greatest Show on Turf. Hakim received an escort down the sidelines by Torry Holt, with the two laughing and joking with each other along the way. It looked like so much fun.

    BIGGEST VICTORY, Jan. 30, 2000

    Do we even need to think about this one? One Super Bowl after another had been b-o-r-i-n-g in recent years, until Tennessee and St. Louis hooked up in Super Bowl XXXIV in Atlanta. This game had everything. Contrasting styles. Big plays. Big comebacks. And one huge momentum swing. In the end, Rams linebacker Mike Jones brought down Titans wide receiver Kevin Dyson just short of the goal line preserving a 23-16 victory. The Lombardi Trophy belonged to St. Louis. Long live The Tackle.

    WORST LOSS, Feb. 3, 2002

    Making their second Super Bowl appearance in three seasons, the heavily favored Rams arrived in New Orleans ready to assert themselves as a dynasty in the making. Instead, the upstart Patriots made it a red, white, and blue Super Bowl less than five months after the 9-11 tragedy. New England jumped to a 17-3 lead before a furious St. Louis rally tied the game 17-17. Just when it looked like the first overtime game in Super Bowl history was upon us, unheralded quarterback Tom Brady led the Pats on a frantic last-second drive, culminating in Adam Vinatieri’s 48-yard field goal as time expired.

    BEST CATCH, Jan. 23, 2000

    Tampa Bay’s fast and fierce defense had the Rams on their heels. An intense, physical NFC title game was going the Buccaneers’ way. With the fourth quarter slipping away and the Trans World Dome crowd quiet and nervous, Tampa Bay held a 6-5 lead. Then, Kurt Warner launched a 30-yard pass to Ricky Proehl for one of the most amazing TD’s in playoff history. Proehl had Bucs defender Brian Kelly draped all over him, but managed to get his feet down in bounds with the ball pinned to his side. Afterwards, some called it “The Catch for the Ages.” For the first time, a St. Louis NFL team was headed to the Super Bowl as a result of this 11-6 victory.

    WORST CATCH, Jan. 10, 2004

    Playing Carolina at home in the NFC semifinals, the Rams were rested from a playoff bye week following a 12-4 regular season. The contest was tied 23-23 at the end of regulation, and stayed that way after one overtime. But on the first play of the second OT, Panthers blockers picked up a Rams blitz. Panthers quarterback Jake Delhomme calmly threw over the middle to a wide-open Steve Smith, who raced past a diving Jason Sehorn for a 69-yard TD and 29-23 Carolina victory. Talk about sudden death. Gone was the Rams’ 14-game home winning streak. Gone was any chance of reaching the Super Bowl for the third time in five years. And gone was the Greatest Show. . . .

    BEST COMEBACK, Nov. 27, 2005

    “We were pretty much left for dead out there, ” linebacker Trev Faulk said. “Twenty-six seconds? Fourth and 6?” Forget about it. Playing the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium, the Rams trailed 27-17 with half a minute left in regulation. With Harvard rookie Ryan Fitzpatrick in at quarterback, Isaac Bruce caught a 43-yard TD with 26 seconds remaining. After a successful onside kick by Jeff Wilkins, Wilkins kicked a 47-yard field goal sending the game into overtime tied 27-27. In OT, Fitzpatrick connected with Kevin Curtis for a 56-yard TD, and a 33-27 Rams victory.

    WORST HALF, Nov. 9, 2008

    In a league where nearly half the games are decided by a touchdown or less, the Rams were down by 40 at halftime against the New York Jets. That’s right, it was 40-0 at intermission in the Meadowlands. “If someone would’ve told me that we would be down 40 points at halftime, I would’ve probably slapped them in the face,” Leonard Little said. Instead, it was the Jets who slapped, shoved, bruised, bullied, punished and otherwise pummeled the Rams en route to a 47-3 victory. The 40-point deficit tied for the third-largest halftime deficit in the history of the NFL. The Jets scored on all seven first-half possessions.


    The season began with coach Mike Martz upset over his inability to get a contract extension. In early October, Martz took a leave of absence because of a bacterial infection of the heart valve known as endocarditis. He never coached another Rams game. A simmering feud between Martz and president of football operations Jay Zygmunt boiled over on Oct. 23. During a game that day with New Orleans, Martz’s attempts to communicate via cell phone to the coaching staff were blocked by Zygmunt. Later in the year, team president John Shaw was furious with reports of Martz saying team management didn’t really want to win. At the end of the ’05 season, the eccentric offensive guru known as “Mad” Mike had his contract terminated.

    SADDEST FAREWELL, Jan. 18, 2008

    Georgia Frontiere was a chorus girl, a club singer, a philanthropist, and a creative eccentric who wrote poetry and liked astrology. She dined with movie stars and sang at Joseph P. Kennedy’s mansion. At various times, she owned homes in London, Los Angeles, New York, Arizona and her native St. Louis. She married seven times. For 29 years she owned a franchise in the ultimate “old-boys league” _ the National Football League _ and during that time the Rams earned 13 playoff berths and appeared in three Super Bowls. As her son, Chip Rosenbloom, said: “She’s led an extraordinary life.” The woman who brought the NFL back to her hometown in 1995 died after a long fight with breast cancer.


    Tough call. But Isaac Bruce had three of his best seasons in the 1990s, not this decade. Orlando Pace was a rock at left tackle the first half of the decade, before injuries took their toll. Marshall Faulk had unbelievable seasons in 2000 and ’01, and then his knees slowly started to give out. Kurt Warner was league MVP in 2001, but was gone after the ’03 campaign. So it has to be the player known as “Big Game,” the pride of Gibsonville, N.C. _ Torry Holt. From 2000-05, Holt became the first player in NFL history with six consecutive seasons of 1,300 yards receiving or more. He made seven Pro Bowls in the decade. And when he left the Rams following the ’08 season, he had more catches, for more yards, than any NFL player this decade. And with rare exception, he did it all with class and a smile.

  • #2
    Re: Rams Top 10 of the Decade

    To me, the October '04 comeback against the Seahawks would have been a better choice than the game against the Texans.


    • #3
      Re: Rams Top 10 of the Decade

      i thought the texans comeback was amazing but beating the seahawks in that game was priceless.


      • #4
        Re: Rams Top 10 of the Decade

        that seahawks game always sticks in my memory more


        • #5
          Re: Rams Top 10 of the Decade

          Originally posted by Nick View Post
          To me, the October '04 comeback against the Seahawks would have been a better choice than the game against the Texans.
          Either one was amazing, but I've heard a few stories from other Rams fans who were there and stayed and saw the comeback. Of course, they LOVED it


          • #6
            Re: Rams Top 10 of the Decade

            Agreed Torry Holt is the player of the decade, has been here a long time and has done alot of things for this team.


            Related Topics


            • RamWraith
              10 Years of the Rams in St. Louis
              by RamWraith
              By Jim Thomas
              Of the Post-Dispatch
              The biggest upset in St. Louis pro football history is, was, and will always be prying away the Rams from southern California. This season marks the franchise's 10th in St. Louis. Periodically throughout the 2004 campaign, including every Sunday in the Rams Report, the Post-Dispatch looks at the first 10 years of "St. Louis" Rams football.

              St. Louis Rams Team of the Decade


              Pos.-----Name--------Years in St. Louis

              WR---Isaac Bruce--------1995-2004
              "Mr. St. Louis Ram" has been here since Day One.

              LT----Orlando Pace--------1997-2004
              5 Pro Bowls and counting for the Big O.

              LG----Tom Nutten--------1998-2002, 2004
              Starter on '99 and '01 Super Bowl teams.

              C-----Andy McCollum-----1999-2004
              4th year as starting C after spending '03 at LG.

              RG----Adam Timmerman----1999-2004
              2-time Pro Bowler and '03 offensive captain.

              RT----Ryan Tucker--------1997-2001
              2-year starter gets slight nod over Fred Miller.

              TE----Ernie Conwell-------1996-2002
              Following severe knee injury started in '01-02.

              WR---Torry Holt----------1999-2004
              Led NFL in catches (117) and yards (1,696) in '03.

              FB----James Hodgins-------1999-2002
              The Hammer could bring it as a lead blocker.

              RB----Marshall Faulk-------1999-2004
              Topped 2,000 yards from scrimmage here 3 times.

              QB----Kurt Warner---------1998-2003
              2-time league MVP led Greatest Show on Turf.


              Pos.-----Name----------Years in St. Louis

              DE-----Kevin Carter---------1995-2000
              Rams 1st St. Louis draft pick led NFL in sacks in '99.

              DT-----Ray Agnew----------1998-2000 S
              olid three-year starter, and team spiritual leader.

              DT-----D'Marco Farr---------1995-2000
              Quick off the ball, and even quicker with a quip.

              DE-----Leonard Little---------1998-2004
              39 sacks in 41 regular-season games from '01-03.

              OLB----Roman Phifer---------1995-98
              The top Rams defender during early years here.

              MLB----London Fletcher--------1998-2001
              Intense, emotional tackling machine from '99-01.

              OLB----Mike Jones-----------1997-2000
              Scored 3 defensive TDs in '99, plus "The Tackle."

              CB-----Todd Lyght----------1995-2000
              Steady in coverage, willing run defender, and durable.

              FS------Keith Lyle-----------1995-2000
              Ballhawk had 9 INTs in '96, and 8 more in '97.

              SS------Adam Archuleta-------2001-04
              Emerging young player led '02 squad in tackles.

              CB-----Aeneas Williams-------2001-04
              -11-01-2004, 03:58 AM
            • OldRamsfan
              Historical Moments # 2 The rest of the story
              by OldRamsfan
              Since their was a member that wanted me to finish the rest of my post on Historical Moments here you are ( sorry for not finishing that post I really was not feeling well while posting that thread soooo here is the rest hope you enjoy ...

              Historical Moments:

              1995: As the Rams got ready for their first season in St. Louis, work was speeded up for a brand new domed stadium in downtown St. Louis ... Despite the increased work the new Trans World Dome would not be ready for the season, and the Rams would have to use Busch Stadium for their first 2 home games ... After stunning the Packers in Green Bay 17-14 on September 3rd, the Rams came home to play their first official game in St. Louis....Fans in the gateway were pleased to have the NFL back and sold out Busch Stadium as the Rams beat the New Orleans Saints 17-13 to improve to 2-0. The Rams would go on to win their next 2 games as well to complete a 4-0 start... After a 21-18 loss to the Colts in Indianapolis, the Rams set to open the Trans World Dome against the Atlanta Falcons...He Rams would open the dome with a 21-19 win to improve to 5-1, setting up a showdown game with San Francisco *****... The ***** game was the moment of truth for the Rams; unfortunately it exposed many weaknesses as the Rams lost 44-10. At 5-2 the Rams still sat in good playoff position, but the loss to the ***** was only the beginning in the final 9 games the Rams won just 2 to finish with a 7-9 record ...

              1996: The Rams shake up their team by trading unhappy stars RB Jerome Bettis, and Shawn Gilbert ... To replace Bettis the Rams draft Nebraska star Lawrence Phillips. The new look Rams start their second season in St. Louis with a win 26-16 against the Cincinnati Bengals at the Trans World Dome. However the Rams would lose their next 4 as Phillips struggled in his rookie season ... After a win over the Jacksonville Jaguars the Rams would continue to struggle and sat at 3-9. The Rams would win 3 of their last 4, to finish with a 6-10 record... However Coach Rich Brooks was still fired following the season in which Phillips only rushed for 632 yards, while scoring 4 TDs ...

              1997: The Rams change their entire coaching staff, as a group of old pros come in to lead the Rams. Leading the way is Dick Vermiel who is returning to coaching after a 15-year hiatus ... One of Vermiel's first moves is to trade up in the draft to select OT Orland Pace to be the foundation of a strong Offensive Line ... The Vermiel led Rams win their first game of the season against the New Orleans Saints 38-24. However once again the 1-0 start would not last long as the Rams lost 10 of their next 11 games ... The Rams would close the season strong again winning 3 of their final 4 to close out with a 5-11 record ...

              1998: In the off season the Rams are forced to release Lawrence Phillips after off the field troubles, and on field struggles become to much for the club to handle.
              -04-20-2006, 09:58 AM
            • ramsbruce
              Fourteen Years Later, ‘The Catch’ Still Looms Large for Rams, Proehl.
              by ramsbruce

              Ricky Proehl knew he was getting the ball.

              He hadn’t scored a touchdown all season, and his 33 receptions were just the fifth-most on the team. Yet with the Rams’ season and Super Bowl contention on the line, with the Rams trailing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 6-5 with less than five minutes remaining in the 1999 NFC Championship game, Proehl had no doubt where the ball was headed. Now 14 years removed, the memory of the play that defined his career in St. Louis hasn’t faded a bit.

              “At that particular time, we had started looking at the clock, saying we had to do something,” said Proehl, who is currently in his first year as the Carolina Panthers’ wide receivers coach.

              “We were thinking touchdown at that point. We had a good play called. We called 585 H choice. We were trying to get Marshall one-on-one with the linebacker and we knew in the huddle, in that situation a lot of times they were going to bring pressure. We were ready for it.”

              In deciphering film the week preceding the NFC championship, the Rams noted that when sending a safety on a blitz, the Buccaneers would anticipate all slants to the middle of the field. The Rams adjusted, making a fade to Proehl the first read against the blitz. As they moved to the line of scrimmage, Proehl and QB Kurt Warner saw the safety move from his perch in the middle of the field, and the play was set.

              “I gave (Buccaneers CB) Brian Kelly a step to the slant, and it just froze him enough to where I could get over the top of him,” Proehl said. “Kurt made a great throw and the rest is history.”

              The 30-yard touchdown reception that gave the Rams an 11-6 win and elevated the franchise to its first Super Bowl since moving to St. Louis almost immediately garnered the moniker, ‘The Catch,’ and remains perhaps the most momentous play in Edward Jones Dome history.

              ‘The Catch’ was the most memorable moment in what was a multi-tiered rivalry with Tampa Bay. The game featured the league’s best offense against the best defense, and there was no shortage of competitive banter between the two teams, both on the field and in the media. Buccaneers guard Frank Middleton and Hall of Fame defensive tackle Warren Sapp frequently drew the ire of Rams players leading up to and following the NFC title game.

              “There was a lot of talking going on,” Proehl said. “The greatest thing about that team was that we always got a team’s best. We were facing what was probably the best defense in the league and it was a challenge for us. We loved that challenge. We took pride in what we did. We knew we could score points against that defense as we did all year, and it was just a great challenge. It was everything you want in a football game as a football player. It was the best on the best. We were going to give it all we’ve got, and they gave the same in return.”

              That rivalry will...
              -12-22-2013, 07:00 AM
            • HUbison
              Rams 10th Anniversary Team
              by HUbison
              The official team site put together the best St. Louis Rams team. Some interesting picks to say the least.

              For those that don't want to read the whole article, I'll give you the abridged version followed by the whole article.

              QB - Warner
              RB - Faulk
              FB - Holcombe
              WR - Bruce & Holt
              TE - Conwell
              OT - Pace & Turley
              OG - Timmerman & Nutten
              C - McCollum

              DE - Wistrom & Little
              DT - Farr, Tyoka, & Pickett
              OLB - Mike Jones & Polley
              ILB - Fletcher
              CB - Aeaneas & Bly
              FS - Lyle
              SS - Arch

              K - Wilkens
              P - Landeta
              ST - Looker
              PR - Hakim
              KR - Horne

              And now for the whole article....

              St. Louis Rams 10th Anniversary Team

              Ten years, one world championship, three NFC West division titles, countless memories.
              The number of players that have contributed to making the St. Louis Rams is well in to the hundreds, but the players that follow are, perhaps, the most responsible for bringing the Rams from the bottom of the barrel to the top of the heap. With the 10th season in St. Louis coming to an end, these are the men who were the best of the best, as voted on by the fans.

              Kurt Warner

              This position was a slam-dunk choice for fans. By now, everyone knows Warner’s story. From grocery bagger to MVP, Warner’s rise was, perhaps, the most meteoric of any athlete in any sport ever.
              His run was rather short-lived, starting just three full seasons in St. Louis, but what a three seasons they were. From 1999-2001, Warner put together what was one of, if not the most prolific statistical runs any quarterback has ever posted. In that three-year span, Warner threw for 12, 612 yards and 98 touchdowns, while missing five game with an injury.

              As the engineer of the “Greatest Show on Turf”, Warner led the aerial attack, lighting up the sky with perfect spiral after perfect spiral. At his best, Warner had the innate ability to thread the needle in traffic and throw a perfectly placed deep ball with equal aplomb. Unfortunately, injuries tainted Warner’s fast track to the Hall of Fame, but he will always be loved in St. Louis for winning Super Bowl XXXIV, where he claimed Super Bowl MVP honors and set the record for most passing yards in the game with 414 passing yards. He won the league’s MVP award that season and claimed it again in 2001, when he led the Rams back to the Super Bowl.

              RUNNING BACK
              Marshall Faulk

              If Warner was the conductor of the Greatest Show on Turf, then Faulk was the engine that made it go. Faulk was traded to the Rams before the 1999 season at the small cost of second and fifth-round draft choices. Without question, that deal will go down in the annals of Rams’ football as probably the biggest steal of a transaction...
              -01-03-2005, 09:10 AM
            • Nick
              Rams hope bad dream will begin to fade away
              by Nick
              Rams hope bad dream will begin to fade away
              By Jim Thomas
              Of the Post-Dispatch

              CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Jake Delhomme over the middle to Steve Smith for 69 yards. Touchdown. Panthers win in double overtime. See you next season, Rams.

              "I don't think there's any doubt it's a play that will stand out in my mind for many years to come," Delhomme said. "It was a great play. It was a great game. It was just too bad someone had to lose that game."

              Too bad for the Rams, that is.

              Carolina used that 29-23 playoff victory as a springboard to the NFC championship. St. Louis, despite a 12-4 regular season, was stymied in its bid to reach the Super Bowl for the third time in five years.

              Rams defensive tackle Ryan Pickett still dreams about the way that game - and that season - ended. Unfortunately, safety Jason Sehorn never catches Smith in any of those dreams.

              "Every night, (Smith) seems to score some kind of way," Pickett said, shaking his head.

              To Rams fans, the mere mention of last season's Carolina game conjures up images of Sehorn lunging for Smith.

              It was a tough way to lose a game, and no one realizes this more than Rams coach Mike Martz. Season-ending losses, whenever they come, are tough for him to take. He's a sore loser. And once his team is finished, he can't bear to watch any more of the playoffs.

              "It angers me," he said. "I've got to go do something else and get away from it. It's just too hard for me to deal with. It's just too much of a disappointment. It takes me a long, long, long time to get through that, and get over it."

              Never was this more so than in the aftermath of the Carolina loss 11 months ago.

              "I'm still not over that one," Martz said. "It still hangs in my craw."

              Suffice it to say, the passage of time has not heightened Martz's appreciation for the classic nature of that Rams-Carolina contest.

              "No," Martz said, bluntly. "We played so well at times. Got in the red zone. You get touchdowns instead of field goals, and you've got control of your own destiny, and who knows what happens after that."

              On the Rams' first three possessions against Carolina that day, they reached the Panthers' 2-, 6- and 8-yard lines. They settled for a field goal each time.

              "That's hard for me," Martz said. "It was really hard for me to look at that tape."

              Then, in a surprising revelation, Martz added, "It was really even more hard than the Super Bowl. We played so well and moved the ball, and got into scoring position, and we didn't get the ball in the end zone."

              Obviously, the Super Bowl reference was to the Rams' 20-17 loss to New England in three...
              -12-12-2004, 12:55 AM