Rams get the win in Hollywood production style

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Los Angeles Rams head coach Jeff Fisher started his post-game press conference by saying, “That was a great win for us for all of those obvious reasons.”

The Red Hot Chili Peppers
The Red Hot Chili Peppers

The most obvious being this was the team’s first regular season game back in Los Angeles since 1995. The other obvious reason: their season opener in Santa Clara against the San Francisco 49ers was, in their words, “embarrassing.”

Sunday afternoon, in the hot Southern California sun, after a scorching musical display by the Red Hot Chili Peppers and a soaring rendition of the National Anthem by CeeLo Green, the Los Angeles Rams wanted to get their home, temporary as it is, kicked off in the right direction. Over 91,000 fans jammed into the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum to cheer for their home team. The Seattle Seahawks are a team that travels well, as the saying goes. Wherever they play there will be a lot of supporters wearing Russell Wilson and Richard Sherman jerseys — and even the occasional Steve Largent, Cortez Kennedy and Walter Jones jerseys.

fans1But the vast majority of people assembled at the Coliseum were Rams fans, many of them old enough to remember when they Rams played at the Coliseum over 36 years ago. Jeff Fisher remembers when the Rams played at the Coliseum. He grew up in the area, watching players like Deacon Jones, Roman Gabriel, Merlin Olsen and Jack Youngblood, who was still playing when Fisher joined the NFL.

So it was no surprise to see jerseys in the tailgate parties before the game with those old school names on them. As well as the names of Eric Dickerson, Orlando Pace, Marshall Faulk — who attended college at San Diego State University just 125 miles south of the Coliseum.

Rams kicker Greg Zuerlein scored all the Rams’ points
Rams kicker Greg Zuerlein scored all the Rams’ points

In the post-game interviews most, if not all, the players and coaches said they did not want to disappoint this fan base, that they deserved to see their team win at home.

Coach Fisher said, “Our first game back here the fans were incredible. It made this a tough place to play starting day one, which was really impressive.”

Quarterback Case Keenum said, “It was good. I thought the crowd was good, it was loud..” he went on to say, “I loved it. The fans — it was awesome. That was really, really cool. I made sure right before I went out in the tunnel, and as I’m running out, just to look around and just to savor that moment and remember. I am going to write that stuff down because I want to remember that forever, It was cool. It was really cool. It may not have been the prettiest game but it was a lot of fun.”

Running back Todd Gurley said, “It was great. They (the fans) had high energy all game. They did a great job.”

The melon heads are a real thing in the Rams Nation.
The melon heads are a real thing in the Rams Nation.

Tight end Lance Kendricks said having the crowd in the Coliseum was important. “Having that energy behind us, it helped immensely. When we go three-and-out, hearing them yell when our defense makes a sack, or something, that gives us energy, and that helps us out.”

Linebacker Alec Ogletree told the media, “Really proud of the guys in the locker room, proud of our fans. It was an amazing feeling to be out there today –— it was a historical moment, glad to be a part of it.”

The interesting fact about the two teams, the Seahawks and Rams, is that neither team has scored a touchdown this season. Even more remarkable: the Rams have only scored nine points in two games.

After the game Seattle Head Coach Pete Carroll told the media, “I never could have thought that we would go the first couple of weeks and not score one touchdown. I’m just surprised at that and we’re better than that.”

The Coliseum torch was lit before the game by former Rams Eric Dickerson, Marshall Faulk, Tom Mack, Orlando Pace, Jackie Slater and Jack Youngblood.
The Coliseum torch was lit before the game by former Rams Eric Dickerson, Marshall Faulk, Tom Mack, Orlando Pace, Jackie Slater and Jack Youngblood.

Jeff Fisher had similar sentiments about his team, “You know, there are some realities to where we are right now. We’re 1-1 in the Division and we haven’t scored a touchdown yet. We need to score some touchdowns, so we’ll keep working on that.”

Once again Tavon Austin wasn’t the game-changing element of the offense he is capable of and running back Todd Gurley had a slow game as well. He had 19 carries for 51 yards. Austin had two carries for six yards. But the wide receiver had five catches for 50 yards, one catch gaining 27 yards.

Gurley had one catch for 19 yards, a big play in the second half.

Case Keenum’s most productive target was wide receiver Kenny Britt. They connected on six passes for 94 yards. Britt’s longest play was 36 yards.

The Rams can move the ball in the air. They had a total of 239 passing yards. But the Seahawks, with Russell Wilson under center, passed for 254 yards. He had some big plays with wide receiver Tyler Lockett, who was briefly knocked out of the game. Lockett finished with four receptions and 99 yards.

Seahawks QB Russell Wilson
Seahawks QB Russell Wilson

After the game Wilson told the media, “I told you guys I was going to be ready to roll, I was going to be ready to roll. I had a few runs in there, but like I always tell you guys, I’m not trying to run the ball, I’m just trying to throw the ball at the right timing. You scramble plays, you look forward to see what you can get. They’re a swarming defense, they get to the ball really well, and just got down like I normally do. It was one of those games where I felt really confident. Unfortunately we didn’t come up with a win.”

One of the highlights for the fans was the Rams’ throwback uniforms in the royal blue and yellow. Everyone at the Coliseum appeared to love the look. Case Keenum said, ““I love the throwbacks, I really do. Everybody in the locker rooms loves the throwbacks. Something about that blue and yellow that go together and it was cool. It was cool to see.” He added, “You kept looking up at the scoreboard and there would be somebody else at the game, that you knew and were there and a part of it. I think a lot of people will remember this day. I’ll look back one day to think about how cool it is, but I think it was good to get a win.”

The final score of the game was 9-3, Rams.

Photos by Claudia Gestro