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When snark goes wrong: LA Times apologizes for questionable headline

The Times used that age old slur, that unspeakable slur...and Rams fans were livid.

Super Bowl LIII - New England Patriots v Los Angeles Rams
Many Rams fans were furious about the LA Times referring to their team as Lambs in the Times’ Super Bowl headline.
Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images

Many Rams fans went to bed on Super Bowl Sunday with their heads still spinning. How could their team have wasted a defensive gem by only mustering a single field goal against an admittedly great game plan by Bill Belichick and Brian Flores?

Many woke up still feeling empty only to receive a second gut punch courtesy of the Los Angeles Times’ front page headline which read:

Now to be real, nobody expected any joy to be found in the headlines the day after a Super Bowl loss, and fluff is for teddy bears, but wow.

All rivalries are loaded with unflattering nicknames for foes, and in the Rams case, rivals have routinely gone to “Lambs”. It rhymes with Rams, it’s a little sheep, why not?

Anyone who has been a Rams fan for any period of time is certainly familiar with the taunt.

However, in this case Rams fans weren’t trading barbs with 49ers fans or Raiders fans, it was the Los Angeles Times’ Super Bowl headline. Thanks!

Nevermind that the Rams had been tied in the 4th quarter of the Super Bowl and had virtually shut down Tom Brady’s offense; they lost, so they weren’t Rams, they were Lambs.

On social media the outrage was obvious from the jump, and even some fans of other teams (while loving it) admitted the headline was rather harsh.

But were Rams fans just being over-sensitive following a Super Bowl loss? Well, let’s provide some context.

Would the Denver Post write, “Donks, Not Broncos”?

Would the San Jose Mercury write, “Whiners, not 49ers”?

Or what about, “Kitten, not Tiger Woods”?

Watch out, Gabby Douglas, you got the silver in 2015, kind of a “Shabby” showing.

Anyway, you get the picture, it was unprofessional.

Rams special teamer Jake McQuaide was even fuming.

Sports editor Angel Rodriguez attempted to lower the heat with this explanation:

That may very well be the reasoning, but nevertheless, at best it made the Times editorial staff appear to be somewhat out of touch with any of the nuance of the Rams fan base. But amid the complaints and threats to cancel subscriptions, the Times is now admitting the mistake and apologizing.

Who knows if the Rams themselves complained, or if it was the surge of angry fans alone, but the Times appears to be realizing that the Rams are now a serious presence in the LA sports landscape, with a growing following that likely only trails the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Dodgers. Being critical of the teams’ shortcomings is a must, but pot shots won’t likely go unnoticed.


How do you feel about the headline?

This poll is closed

  • 76%
    The LA Times was out of line
    (729 votes)
  • 23%
    Fans were overreacting
    (228 votes)
957 votes total Vote Now


Do you accept the the Times explanation and apology?

This poll is closed

  • 25%
    (207 votes)
  • 74%
    (618 votes)
825 votes total Vote Now