Okay, I'll be the one to throw some water on this scorching hot Rams hype.
Many Rams fans are excited at the idea of the Rams going on their first three-game win streak since 2012 in Weeks 12-14. Some are even categorizing the Rams showdown with the Vikings in the "should win" department. With the way the Rams defense and Just Todd Gurley are playing, that's not a bad stance to have. St. Louis faced Minnesota once in 2012 and also in the 2014 season opener.
Let's revisit those games.
The Rams are streaking! 2012: Week 15 Minnesota at St. Louis
The Rams are 6-6-1 and are coming off three straight wins, making a late playoff push! In come the 7-6 Vikings to town. Adrian Peterson has set the league on fire at this point, carrying Christian Ponder and the Vikings. Most of you know that Peterson torched the Rams for 212 yards and 1 TD but not all fans are aware that nearly all of his damage came on about 6 of his 24 rushing attempts. Before Peterson ripped of his 82 yard touchdown run, 5 of his 8 carries went for negative yardage. For the game, half of Peterson's carries went for 2 yards or less. But the Rams ultimately let him touch them up for two 50+ yard runs along with four more 10+ yard runs.
The Rams dug themselves a 33-7 hole on the back of a Everson Griffin pick 6, fumbles, penalties, and those few runs by AP. That hole wiped out the statistical advantage the Rams held in total yards, 1st downs, 3rd down conversion rate, and sacks. Sam Bradford posted a career high 377 passing yards but most came in garbage time. The mental lapse in those handful of plays led to a major letdown on the heels of a time when everything seemed to be fantastic as a Rams fan. Vikings win 36-22.
Sack City is HERE! 2014: Week 1 Minnesota at St. Louis
If you have never uttered the self-appointed nickname "Sack City" in a sentence then do you even Ram? It's the season opener. At Home! Rams fans are pumped. They don't care that Sam Bradford was lost for the season just a few weeks prior with another torn ACL. "It's the F*&#%@g Vikings, how can we lose?" I'm sure many of you told yourselves(I did). Matt Cassel vs thee Sack City??? Psh, please.
Well the Rams trotted out Shaun Hill at QB and the Rams put up a goose egg in the 1st half. Vikes lead 13-0. Hill mysteriously injured himself at the end of the half so Austin Davis had to finish out the game. Adrian Peterson didn't have a repeat performance of 2012(Went 21/75/0) but Cordarrelle Patterson decided to burn the Rams D rushing 3 times for 102 yards and a painfully memorable 67 yard TD run. Davis matched Hill's 1st half interception with one of his own, but Harrison Smith took this one to the house. The Rams fumbled the ball four times, magically not losing any, and never managed to find the end zone. Zero sacks from Sack City and 13 penalties later the Rams fell to the Vikings again. 34-6. Another disappointing game.
Getting the Monkey off their Back
The last three-win streak for the Rams ended at the hands of the Vikings. Faced with the opportunity to attain such a streak again, the Rams must win in Minnesota. The Rams defense has played like they are up to task, allowing just two field goals in each of their last two games. Todd Gurley is taking the league by storm. This is a team with the arrow pointing up and looking to finally emerge from the pack with an upcoming block of games that look winnable. I think its fitting that in order to plow through football purgatory, the Rams must travel to Minnesota and face the team that has cooled them off in seasons past.
If they manage to get over this hurdle, then we maybe we might finally see a Rams team worth the hype.