SB Nation NFL Theme Week has been a pretty fun exercise this year.
We’ve covered individual players, front office mistakes, the sentimental side of being a fan and everything in between. As a Los Angeles Rams fan, Theme Week posts have been pretty regularly an exercise in enjoyment. For a franchise that’s posting its first winning season in a decade and a half and going to the playoffs along the same timeline, assessing the state of things is usually pretty enjoyable.
Which is what makes this week so tough.
We’re supposed to identify the one thing we’d change about our team this year. And I struggled with it, for obvious reasons. This season has just been damn near perfect.
Most teams have something obvious to lean on like an injury to their key starting QB (see: the Indianapolis Colts, Houston Texans, Philadelphia Eagles or Green Bay Packers). Others have more deeper regrets like our Miami Dolphins fans over at the Phinsider who wished they hadn’t had to use their bye week in Week 1 or Detroit Lions fans at Pride of Detroit BEGGING for a capable rushing attack.
For the 2017 Los Angeles Rams though, that’s not really much I regret. The signing of RB Lance Dunbar was perhaps an unnecessary purchase, but if that’s the worst financial excess for your team in an offseason, that’s a really good offseason. And yes, DE Dominique Easley, CB Kayvon Webster and now K Greg Zuerlein are all on injured reserve, but that pales in comparison to what most teams have dealt with in terms of injury.
Overall, it’s been a very good season that the majority of fans wish they could enjoy from their team and that’s without the action left to come.
So what do I regret?
That it took so damn long.
Turf Show Times was founded in 2006. We had to wait. And wait. And wait. And wait. And I’m not talking about waiting for 13-win seasons and deep playoff runs. I’m just talking about competence. A single season here or there. Competitiveness.
No, we had to endure year after year after year after year of watching other franchises bob up and down the NFL parity ladder while the top 20% or so of the league remained at the top in the last era.
We had to see a 10-win Cleveland Browns team and an 11-win Jacksonville Jaguars team in 2007. We had to see the Oakland Raiders turn things around last year. We had to constantly look upward at the San Francisco 49ers during their three-year run to the NFC Championship or the Arizona Cardinals who had periods of success under former HC Ken Whisenhunt and current HC Bruce Arians or the Seattle Seahawks who have consistently been a thorn in our sides since 2010.
Year after year after year, we waited. And hoped. And something worth celebrating has finally arrived.
I wouldn’t change anything except for how long we had to wait for it to get here.