There are moments in our lives we will never forget.
Getting married. Children’s births. Things that bring us joy which we treasure forever.
The Professor has had those moments, but the one he will remember the most in his life and treasure seeing was K Greg Zuerlein make a 57 yard field goal to put my Los Angeles Rams into the Super Bowl.
I harken back to the days as a 7-year old child watching my Los Angeles Rams lose in the playoffs to the Green Bay Packers in 1967 and those games home at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and away sitting next to my father watching our Rams lose in the playoffs—again. The empty feeling I felt tinged with words of hope that there’s always next year.
That’s when I learned then its a lot harder to make to the Super Bowl then it is to play it. That’s what makes the New England Patriots dynasty so remarkable.
But then there is our 2018 Rams. The team that two years ago was 4-12. Saddled with a first pick in the draft labeled a bust. An offensive line that couldn’t block and a defense which was good, but not excellent.
After firing 7-9 BS, the organization made a conscious decision to go out and find a Head Coach, one that the would turn the fortunes of the franchise around. The Rams already had a great owner in Stan Kroenke spending billions to build Los Angeles a brand new, state of the art stadium. They also had great management with Kevin Demoff, the public face of the franchise, always listening to the fans, absorbing the information he received and responding “we hear you.” The Rams also had a general manager in Les Snead who worked night and day to bring through the draft, trade or free agency players who would developed into Back-to-Back NFC West Conference Champions.
The Rams found the diamond in the rough. The person whose words at first press conference resonated with the fans “We Not Me.” You could sense in first year as head coach, something special was about to happen to the Los Angeles Rams football. He assembled a staff of football coaches, who actually knew football and when the Denver Broncos, let go defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, he snatched him up.
Jared Goff was no longer a bust, but a Super Bowl caliber quarterback Todd Gurley became the running back we saw as a rookie, not only in the ground game, but also the passing game. The Rams brought in a Andrew Whitworth an experienced left tackle and he instantly became the face of revamped offensive line that opened holes and gave Goff the time needed to make the passes. They went out and acquired a bevy of wide receivers, Robert Woods and Brandin Cooks, Cooper Kupp and Josh Reynolds. During the off season, the Rams traded for cornerbacks, Aqib Talib and Marcus Peters. They re-signed defensive tackle Aaron Donald making him the highest paid defensive player, for at least a day.
All the pieces were in place for Super Bowl contending team.
Yesterday, it all came together against the New Orleans Saints. It’s not about the crowd noise or referees that turn teams into conference champions but rather battling through the whatever adversity you face in the course of game and coming out with a win.
As the ball sailed through the uprights, I could only think back to the words my father said to me upon realizing he’s son wasn’t just a diehard—he was certifiably crazy about a football team, “Never give up your dreams”
So for of all the sons and daughters who hit the floor, raised your hands in the air and looked to heavens....
WE’RE GOING TO THE SUPER BOWL!