CHRONOLOGY




1937
On Feb. 13, the National Football League grants a Cleveland franchise to Homer Marshman and Associates, a prominent group of local businessmen. Another Rams team in Cleveland had played in the American Football League in 1936 and finished with a 5-2-2 record, second best in the league. Hugo Bezdek is named head coach of new NFL franchise. Rams finish with 1-10 record. Home games are played in Municipal Stadium and League Park. Bob Kelley is named radio play-by-play announcer.

1938
Assistant coach Art Lewis takes over team after three losses at start of season. Rams win first three under Lewis but finish with 4-7 record. Home games are played in Shaw Stadium, named after high school on Shaw Avenue in Cleveland.

1939
Earl (Dutch) Clark becomes head coach. Rams finish at .500 for first time with 5-5-1 record. Parker Hall joins team as rookie tailback and wins Joe Carr Trophy as NFL's official Most Valuable Player. Trophy is named after NFL president. Hall is first Ram to earn first team All-Pro honors.

1940
Rams drop back to 4-6-1 record. Fullback Johnny (Zero) Drake is all-NFL first team.

1941
Daniel F. Reeves and Fred Levy, Jr., purchase Rams in June and hire Billy Evans as general manager. Team wins first two games but drops next nine to finish fifth in NFL West.

1942
Evans resigns before season. Charles (Chile) Walsh replaces Art Lewis as assistant coach. Lt. Reeves and Maj. Levy depart to enter armed forces. Bob Kelley is named club secretary. After three seasons in Municipal Stadium Rams return to play all home games in League Park. Team finishes 5-6. Clark resigns as head coach after season with overall, 16-26-2 record.

1943
Chile Walsh is named head coach, but NFL grants Rams permission to suspend operations for one season because of wartime restrictions and shortages. On April 16, Reeves buys out Levy. On loan to Detroit, Riley Matheson is all-NFL selection.

1944
Chile Walsh becomes general manager and appoints Aldo (Buff) Donelli as head coach. Team of free agents and pickups finishes 4-6-0.

1945
Donelli joins military. Walsh names his brother, Adam Walsh, as head coach. Bob Waterfield, a third-round future draft choice in 1944 from UCLA joins team as T-formation quarterback and leads Rams to 9-1 season for first NFL West title. On icy field, Rams defeat Washington Redskins, 15-14, at Cleveland for NFL championship, Dec. 16. Waterfield becomes first player to receive unanimous vote for NFL Most Valuable Player award. Walsh is named coach of the year. Riley Matheson, Jim Benton, Eberle Schultz and Jim Gillette receive all-Pro honors. Benton caught 10 passes for NFL record 303 yards in 28-21 win at Detroit, Nov. 22. Benton's mark stood as NFL record for 44 years, broken by Rams' Flipper Anderson, who had 336 yards in 1989 game. Eddie Kotal joins team as NFL's first, fulltime college scout.

1946
Reeves receives approval to move franchise to Los Angeles, Jan. 11. Rams sign halfback Kenny Washington, March 9, and end Woody Strode, March 21. They are first African-American players in the modern NFL and join team one year before Jackie Robinson breaks baseball color barrier with Brooklyn Dodgers. After 6-4-1 season, both Walshes resign.

1947
Reeves assumes duties of general manager. Bob Snyder is named head coach with Joe Stydahar as new assistant. Team is talent-heavy but slowed by injuries in 6-6 season. Reeves sells part interests to former partner Levy; to Edwin and Harold Pauley, and Hal Seley.

1948
Clark Shaughnessy joins staff as advisory coach. Snyder resigns, Sept. 3. and Shaughnessy becomes head coach. Rams are first professional franchise with team ensignia or logo on helmet. They introduce headgear with painted Rams horns, designed by halfback Fred Gehrke, an industrial design artist in off-seasons. By 1960, all pro teams except Cleveland have logos on helmets. Team wins four of last five to post 6-5-1 mark.

1949
Rams wins first six games, capped by 27-24 victory over Chicago Bears before Rams record crowd of 86,080 in Los Angeles Coliseum, then hang on with 2-2-2 finish to win first NFL West title since moving from Cleveland. Heavy rain and sloppy field at Coliseum conspire against Rams as Philadelphia Eagles skid to 14-0 win in NFL title game.

1950
NFL absorbs All-America Football Conference, leaving Rams as lone pro team in Los Angeles after four years of two-league existence and Rams competition from Los Angeles Dons. In February, Stydahar becomes head coach, replacing Shaughnessy. Team sets 22 league records in rolling to conference title tie. Waterfield and end Tom Fears lead Rams to 24-14 division playoff win over Bears, but following week in Cleveland, Lou Groza's late field goal beats Rams, 30-28. Waterfield is named NFL Player of Year by Washington D.C. Touchdown Club.

1951
Rams win third straight NFL West title on final day of season, then defeat Cleveland at the Coliseum, 24-17, on 73-yard pass, Norm Van Brocklin to Fears, for first world title since moving to Los Angeles.

1952
After team loses three straight preseason games and drops league opener 37-7 to Cleveland, Stydahar resigns. He is replaced as head coach by Hampton Pool. Team loses two of next three, but wins last eight to tie for NFL West title. Rams lose Western playoff in Detroit 31-21. Rams trade 11 players to Dallas for rookie Les Richter, who then enters Army for two years. Waterfield retires.

1953
Club co-owner Harold Pauley passes away. Rams finish with 8-3-1 record, losing three games by total of eight points to finish third in NFL West. Rams defeat eventual world champion Detroit twice; Rams 37-34 victory over Lions Nov. 1 is witnessed by 93,751 in Coliseum, a pro football record.

1954
Norm Van Brocklin is named NFL Player of Year by Washington D.C. Touchdown Club. Team has disappointing 6-5-1 mark. Split end Bob Boyd is lone Ram to be named all-Pro. All assistant coaches resign. Pool soon follows.

1955
On Jan. 26, Rams hire Sid Gillman, head coach at University of Cincinnati, to replace Pool. Fine defensive year and clutch field goal kicking by Les Richter give team hard-fought, 8-3-1 record for NFL West title. Cleveland wins title game at Coliseum 38-14.

1956
In form reversal, team loses five consecutive early-season games and finishes with 4-8 record.

1957
Ram owners name former Ram publicist Pete Rozelle as general manager. Team loses squeakers on road to 49ers and Lions, finishing 6-6. Rams set standing professional record with attendance of 102,368 for game with San Francisco, Nov. 10.

1958
Van Brocklin goes to Eagles in preseason trade. Bill Wade sets several Rams passing records en route to 8-4 season. Rams twice draw home crowds of more than 100,000.

1959
Rams lose last eight games and finish 2-10, their poorest record since 1937. Ollie Matson, acquired in trade with Chicago Cardinals March 23 for 9 players, is workhorse at fullback, On last day of season, Gillman and staff resign.

1960
Following death of Bert Bell, Pete Rozelle is named NFL commissioner, Jan. 26. Elroy Hirsch replaces Rozelle as Rams general manager. Bob Waterfield is named head coach. Rams post 4-7-1 record.

1961
Rams trade Bill Wade, Del Shofner, and John Guzik to Chicago for Zeke Bratkowski, Lindon Crow and 1962 first draft choice, which enables Rams to draft both future Rams greats Roman Gabriel and Merlin Olsen the following year. Rams finish with 4-10 record.

1962
Rams make North Carolina State quarterback Roman Gabriel second pick in first round and Utah State defensive tackle Merlin Olsen third pick in first round of draft. Dick Bass provides bright spot in 1-12-1 season with all-Pro selection. Waterfield resigns after eighth game. Harland Svare is named interim head coach. On Dec. 27, in closed auction, Reeves reacquires control of Rams, purchasing full interests of co-owners Pauley, Levy, Seley and Bob Hope.

1963
Reeves sells 49% interest in Rams to Gene Autry, Bob Reynolds, Leonard Firestone, Paul A. O'Bryan, Robert Lehman, J.D. Stetson Coleman and Joseph A. Thomas. Svare is retained. After 0-5 start, Gabriel is reinstated as starting QB and plays last nine games without relief, guiding team to 5-4 mark and season record of 5-9-0. Rosey Grier is acquired from New York Giants and joins Deacon Jones, Merlin Olsen and Lamar Lundy to form original Fearsome Foursome.

1964
Rams sign 10-year contract to play in 'new look' Coliseum 'stadium-within-a-stadium.' Seating capacity is lowered from 100,000-plus to 72,000 with installation of temporary seats that close off several thousand permananent seats. Fourteen rookies make the squad. Club finishes fifth with 5-7-2 record. Deacon Jones unofficially records first 20-sack season in league history with 22.

1965
After winning only one of first 10 games, Rams take three of last four against top two teams in each conference, but Svare is dismissed as head coach.

1966
After court fight, George Allen is released by George Halas from his assistant coaching duties with the Chicago Bears to become head coach of the Rams. NFL and AFL merge in spring. Bob Kelley, 'Voice of the Rams' since the club's beginning in 1937, dies in September. Team finishes 8-6, best record since 1958.

1967
Equipment manager Bill Granholm leaves club after 18 years to take position in league office. Don Hewitt begins 28-year tenure as equipment manager. Rams record first unbeaten preseason with six wins, including victories over first-ever AFL opponents, San Diego and Kansas City. Team completes finest win-loss season ever with 11-1-2 record to win Coastal Division Championship, the first title of any kind since 1955, then loses to Green Bay 28-7 in NFL Western Conference Championship Game. Rams win Playoff Bowl game in Miami in January over Cleveland 30-6. Game featured losing teams in conference finals. George Allen receives NFL Coach-of-Year honors by The Sporting News. Jones establishes unofficial NFL record with 26 sacks.

1968
Team finishes regular season with 10-3-1 record, second in Coastal Division to Baltimore's 13-1. Attendance is more than one million for second straight year and Ram defense sets 14-game NFL record for fewest yards allowed. On Dec. 26, Allen is dismissed as head coach but rehired two weeks later. Deacon Jones is named NFL Defensive Player of Year for second straight season after registering 24 sacks.

1969
After 20 years with the Rams as player, general manager and assistant to the president, Elroy Hirsch leaves club to become athletic director at University of Wisconsin. He is replaced by Public Relations Director Jack E. Teele, and John Sanders becomes Assistant General Manager. Team wins Coastal Division with 11-3 record before losing to Minnesota in Western Conference title game, 23-20 but beat Dallas 31-0 in Playoff Bowl. QB Roman Gabriel is unanimous choice as NFL's most valuable player. T Bob Brown, T Charlie Cowan, G Tom Mack, Gabriel, DE Deacon Jones, DT Merlin Olsen and DB Eddie Meador give Rams a team record seven all-Pro selections.

1970
Playoff Bowl victory over Dallas in January points Rams toward their 25th year in Southern California. With completion of the merger of the NFL and AFL, the Rams join San Francisco, Atlanta and New Orleans in the Western Division of the National Conference of the new 26-team National Football League. Rams finish second to 49ers with 9-4-1 record. George Allen's contract is not renewed.

1971
On April 15, owner Daniel F. Reeves dies of cancer in New York. His longtime friend and business associate, William A. Barnes, becomes President and General Manager. Tommy Prothro replaces Allen. Playing the toughest schedule in the NFL, the Rams finish with 8-5-1 record, second to 49ers in the NFC West.

1972
In a history-making move, Baltimore Colts owner Carroll Rosenbloom trades the Baltimore franchise to Robert Irsay in exchange for the Rams. Irsay had purchased the Rams from the estate of the late Dan Reeves. The transaction was completed and announced on July 14. Rosenbloom, the most successful owner in the NFL over the last two decades, brings with him to Los Angeles Don Klosterman, Rosenbloom's general manager in Baltimore. After five years at Cal State-Fullerton, Rams move training site to Cal State- Long Beach. After 6-7-1 season, all coaches are dismissed.

1973
An observer in '72, Rosenbloom begins to make changes early in year, and they pay off quickly. His choice for head coach, former Detroit assistant Chuck Knox, leads team to 12-2 season, winningest in Rams history, and Knox is NFL Coach of the Year. Roman Gabriel is traded to Philadelphia and the new quarterback, former San Diego Charger John Hadl, is NFC Player of the Year. Rams win NFC West title, but lose in first round of playoffs to Dallas. Other changes introduced by Rosenbloom include return to blue and gold uniforms; team had worn blue and white since 1957.

1974
After 3-2 start, Rams trade John Hadl to Green Bay for five draft choices in bold move that stuns football world. Hadl's backup, James Harris, becomes starter and leads team to 10-4 record, its second straight NFC Western title, and its first playoff victory (19-10 over Washington) since 1951 before the Rams bow to Minnesota, 14-10, in NFC title game. Merlin Olsen wins Bert Bell Trophy as NFL's most valuable player.

1975
With defense allowing second fewest points in NFL history over a 14-game season (135), Rams win third straight NFC West title by completing 12-2 season. Jack Youngblood is named NFC Defensive Player of Year. After playoff victory over St. Louis, Rams bow to Dallas in the NFC Championship Game. The 34-8 record over last three years is best in NFL.

1976
Rams win NFC West title for fourth straight year with 10-3-1 record then beat Dallas, 14-12, for their first playoff victory on the road before 24-13 NFC title game loss at Minnesota. Quarterback injuries mar season and rookie Pat Haden becomes fourth different playoff QB in four years under Knox. Rams' 351 points is highest total in NFC. Jack Youngblood, Isiah Robertson and Monte Jackson are named All-Pro. Merlin Olsen is invited to a league-record 14th Pro Bowl.

1977
Rams spearhead new Coliseum configuration which reduces capacity from 91,038 to 71,039. With Lawrence McCutcheon setting club career rushing record of 5,523 yards, the Rams (10-4) roll to their fifth straight division title before 14-7 playoff loss to Minnesota in Coliseum. Isiah Robertson earns NFC linebacker-of-year award for third consecutive season. Following the season Knox resigns to take Buffalo Bills head coaching post.

1978
On Feb. 1, Rosenbloom hires George Allen but releases Allen after second preseason game. Ray Malavasi becomes head coach and leads club to 12-4 record for sixth straight division title (tying NFL record). Rams beat Minnesota, 34-10, in playoff but lose NFC title to Dallas. Pat Haden earns NFC player-of-year award. Rams announce move to Anaheim Stadium beginning in 1980.

1979
Carroll Rosenbloom dies April 2 and his widow, Georgia, becomes majority owner. Club moves offices and in-season training facility to Rams Park in Anaheim. Despite multitude of injuries, team wins seventh straight division title to set NFL record, then beats Dallas (21-19) and Tampa Bay (9-0) in NFC Playoffs. Rams lose to Pittsburgh in Super Bowl XIV, 31-19.

1980
With Anaheim Stadium's capacity set at 69,045, Rams sell out last six home games and finish with 11-5 record. Rams lead NFL in rushing for first time since 1957, gaining 2,799 yards. Rams set 15 club records and tie three others. Nolan Cromwell is All-NFL and NFC defensive player of the year. Rams enter playoffs as wild card and lose to Dallas, 34-13.

1981
Rams finish 6-10, missing playoffs for first time since 1972. Nolan Cromwell and LeRoy Irvin named All-NFL. Irvin sets NFL record with 207 punt return yards in 37-35 win over Atlanta. Wendell Tyler rushes for 1,074 yards and ties Elroy Hirsch's club record of 17 touchdowns in a season. Rams sell out first seven regular season games at Anaheim Stadium.

1982
NFL players' strike wipes out seven games and the Rams finish last in NFC with 2-7 record. QB Bert Jones, acquired in draft day trade from Baltimore, misses last 5 games with neck injury. In Jones's place, Vince Ferragamo throws for 509 yards vs. Chicago, second highest in league history. Following the season Ray Malavasi is dismissed as head coach.

1983
Spearheading one of the most dramatic turnarounds in NFL history, Rams owner Georgia Frontiere hires former USC Coach John Robinson in February. Revamped front office engineers a dozen off-season trades. Eric Dickerson is drafted on the first round in April. Robinson installs new offense (single back) and new defense (3-4-4) while Frontiere signs all players on roster. Rams go 9-7 and enter playoffs as wild card team winning at Dallas before losing to Redskins in Washington. Dickerson breaks NFL rookie rushing record (1,808 yards), sets five Ram records, and is All-Pro. Robinson is NFC coach of the year.

1984
Rams make playoffs for second time in as many years after finishing with 10-6 mark. Rams host first playoff game at Anaheim Stadium before record crowd of 67,037 but lose to New York Giants in NFC Wild Card Game. Eric Dickerson rushes for 2,105 yards, breaking O.J. Simpson's NFL record of 2,003. Jack Youngblood sets Ram record by playing in 201st consecutive game. QB Jeff Kemp replaces injured Vince Ferragamo in Week 3 and leads team to nine wins. Dickerson is named NFC Player of the Year.

1985
Rams season falls one game short when they lose to Chicago Bears in the NFC Championship Game. The defense and special teams play prominent roles in 11-5 regular season. Rams defense stifles Minnesota on one-inch line to preserve 13-10 victory as time runs out in Week 5. Ron Brown electrifies Anaheim Stadium crowd by returning two kickoffs for touchdowns against Green Bay to tie NFL record in Week 12. Eric Dickerson sets NFL playoff record by rushing for 248 yards against Dallas in Rams' first playoff win, 20-0, at Anaheim Stadium. Nine Rams make NFC Pro Bowl team.

1986
Rams make playoffs for fourth consecutive year after posting 10-6 regular-season record. Rams acquire rookie QB Jim Everett from Houston. Everett throws three touchdown passes in debut against Patriots and starts last five games including playoff loss to Washington. Eric Dickerson surpasses former Ram RB Lawrence McCutcheon as the team's all-time leading rusher with 6,968 yards in only four seasons.

1987
Rams fail to make the playoffs for the first time since 1982 with 6-9 record. NFL players' strike shortens season by one game while three games are played with "Replacement" players. Rams acquire six draft choices (three No. 1 and three No. 2 over next two years) from Colts in blockbuster trade for RB Eric Dickerson. Charles White takes over for Dickerson and wins NFL rushing title by gaining 1,374 yards and is named to his first Pro Bowl.

1988
Rams qualify for playoffs for fifth time in six seasons under John Robinson, who becomes winningest coach in club history with 58 victories. Rams lose NFC Wildcard Game to Minnesota after finishing with a 10-6 record. with 86. Rams tie club record with 56 quarterback sacks and lead league. Rams have five of the top 47 choices in draft and select RB Gaston Green and WR Aaron Cox on the first round.

1989
Rams finish regular season with 11-5 record and qualify for playoffs as wild card entry. Team posts road playoff victories over Philadelphia and New York Giants before losing to San Francisco in NFC Championship Game. Rams' 13 wins are most since 1978. Willie "Flipper" Anderson, sets NFL record with 336 receiving yards on 15 catches versus New Orleans, Nov. 26. Jerry Gray returns interception for touchdown and is most valuable player in Pro Bowl. Jackie Slater is NFC Offensive Lineman of Year for third straight season and fifth time in career.

1990
Henry Ellard, (most receptions with 412 and yards with 7,037), and Jackie Slater (most games played with 209) set Ram records as the team posts 5-11 record. Rams end 49ers winning streak at 15 over two seasons with 28-17 victory in San Francisco.

1991
Rams endure 3-13 season. The franchise loses a record 10 games in a row to finish the season. John Robinson resigns as head coach prior to the club's last regular season game. T Jackie Slater becomes the first player in Ram history to play 16 seasons. Rams fail to have a player named to the NFL Pro Bowl for the first time since the game's inception in 1950.

1992
Rams hire former head coach Chuck Knox (1973-77) as head coach, replacing John Robinson. Rams select DT Sean Gilbert, from the University of Pittsburgh with third choice in the first round. By doubling its victory total from previous year Los Angeles finishes 6-10. Rams deal eventual Super Bowl XXVII champion Dallas only loss at home 27-23 and set club record by overcoming 24-point deficit in 31-27 win at Tampa Bay. Kevin Greene is named to all-Pro first team.

1993
NFL and Player Association representatives agree on a new free agency system for players with 5 years or more experience. Rams select RB Jerome Bettis from the University of Notre Dame with 10th pick in the first round and Bettis earns Rookie of the Year honors after rushing for 1,429 yards (2nd in NFL) including 212 yards at New Orleans in 23-20 Rams' victory.

1994
Rams are active in off-season of change in which club signs several free agents, including QB Chris Miller of Atlanta and DT Jimmie Jones of Dallas, and trades QB Jim Everett. Rams trade down in draft and have 10 choices in first six rounds and seven in first three. Auburn T Wayne Gandy is club's first choice, May 3. Rams exercise clause in their lease with city of Anaheim that allows the club to terminate lease within 15 months. Rams become first team ever to shut out Joe Montana with 16-0 win over Kansas City at Arrowhead Stadium. Team suffers its fifth consecutive losing season after dropping final seven games. Chuck Knox is relieved of coaching duties at end of season.

1995
Frontiere moves franchise to St. Louis after 49 years in Southern California. NFL owners approve team's relocation effort with 23-6-1 vote, April 12, bringing NFL football back to St. Louis after eight- year absence. League owners originally block proposed move with 3-21-6 vote, March 15. Rams hire Steve Ortmayer as Vice President for Football Operations and former Oregon coach Rich Brooks as 19th head coach in team history. Rams make Florida DE Kevin Carter their number one draft choice. Rams greet St. Louis with 4-0 record to start season. Isaac Bruce produces record-breaking year with 119 receptions for 1,781 yards. Jackie Slater becomes first player in NFL history to play 20 seasons with one team by starting against Carolina and sets record for offensive linemen with 258 games played.

1996
Rams trade DE Sean Gilbert to Washington for sixth overall pick in 1996 draft and later swap RB Jerome Bettis to Pittsburgh for second-round selection in 1996 and fourth-round pick in 1997. Team moves into state-of-the-art administration and practice facility in June and move training camp from Maryville University in suburban St. Louis to Western Illinois University in Macomb. S Keith Lyle ties for NFL lead in interceptions with 9.

1997
Rams celebrate club's 60th anniversary of professional football. Dick Vermeil is hired as head coach and President of Football Operations, replacing Rich Brooks, Jan. 20. Vermeil replaces Steve Ortmayer with Lynn Stiles as Vice President/Football Operations. Vermeil assembles experienced staff of five former professional football head coaches, including Mike White, Bud Carson, Jim Hanifan, Frank Gansz and Dick Coury. Vermeil trades four picks to New York Jets in exchange for first pick in 1997 NFL draft. Rams select offensive tackle Orlando Pace first overall.

1998
Defensive coordinator Bud Carson announces retirement. Dick Vermeil names Peter Giunta and John Bunting co-defensive coordinators. Rams select DE Grant Wistrom and RB Robert Holcombe in first two rounds of 1998 NFL Draft.

1999
Rams acquire Pro Bowl RB Marshall Faulk from Indianapolis in exchange for second and fifth round draft choices in 1999 NFL Draft, April 15. St. Louisan Trent Green, who attended Vianney High, highlighted an aggressive off-season pursuit of veteran free agents. Rams also signed G Adam Timmerman of Green Bay, S Devin Bush of Atlanta, and LB Todd Collins of New England. Rams draft Torry Holt, wide receiver from North Carolina State University, in first round, number six overall. Holt made 88 receptions for 1,604 yards and 11 touchdowns during his senior season at N.C. State. Green completed 28 of first 32 pass attempts before sustaining season-ending knee injury in third preseason game versus San Diego, Aug. 28. Green's injury cleared the way for Kurt Warner, a former Arena League and NFL Europe player who went undrafted out of Northern Iowa. Warner set numerous records, led Rams to their first division championship since 1985, became only the second player to throw for more than 40 touchdowns in one season, and was the NFL's Most Valuable Player. Warner's only NFL experience had been in the fourth quarter of season-ending loss at San Francisco in 1998.

2000
The Rams win three playoff games in January, 49-37 over Minnesota in the NFC divisional round, Jan. 16, and 11-6 over Tampa Bay in the NFC Championship. Kurt's Warner's 31-yard pass to Ricky Proehl with 4:44 remaining brought the Rams from behind against Tampa Bay., Jan. 24. The Rams defeated Tennessee 23-16 in Super Bowl XXXIV at Atlanta on a 74-yard pass play, Warner to Isaac Bruce, with 1:54 remaining. The victory was not clinched until LB Mike Jones made a touchdown-saving tackle at the one-yard line on the last play, Jan. 31. Eight Rams, Warner, Marshall Faulk, Isaac Bruce, Orlando Pace, Kevin Carter, D'Marco Farr, Adam Timmerman, and Todd Lyght, are selected to the NFC Pro Bowl squad. Dick Vermeil retires and is replaced by assistant coach Mike Martz as head coach, Feb. 2.

The Rams tie for the NFC West title with 10-6 record but lose in first round of playoffs at New Orleans after a season in which two top players, QB Kurt Warner and RB Marshall Faulk, miss a combined total of eight games with injuries. Faulk scores 26 touchdowns in 14 games and is a unanimous choice for NFL Player of the Year. Warner, Faulk, Bruce and Pace are selected to the Pro Bowl. All but Pace withdrew because of the effects of injury. Torry Holt replaced Bruce and led the NFC with 7 catches for 123 yards and a touchdown.

2001
Martz appoints Lovie Smith defensive coordinator, Bobby April special teams coach, Ron Meeks secondary coach, Bill Kollar defensive line coach and upgrades offensive assistant Ken Zampese to wide receivers coach, in January. Henry Ellard becomes offensive assistant. Also appointed to coaching staff is Matt Sheldon as defensive assistant. Rams draft three defensive players, DT Damione Lewis (12), S Adam Archuleta (20), and DT Ryan Pickett (29) in first round of NFL draft, continuing overhaul of that unit, April 21. Tackle Jackie Slater and defensive end Jack Youngblood are inducted into Pro Football Hall of Fame and, for the third time since AFC-NFC series began in 1970, Rams play in the Hall of Fame game, defeating Miami Dolphins 17-10, Aug. 5-6. Rams become second team in NFL history to open season with 6-0 record in three consecutive years by defeating New York Jets 34-14, Oct. 21. The only other team to accomplish feat was Green Bay Packers (1929-31). Kurt Warner is named NFL Most-Valuable Player and Marshall Faulk is named NFL Offensive Player of the Year. Rams win NFC West with 14-2 record, best in club history.

2002
Rams defeat Green Bay 45-17 and Philadelphia 29-24 to advance to Super Bowl XXXVI. New England defeats Rams 20-17 on 48-yard field goal by Adam Vinatieri as game ended, Feb. 3. Rams Isaac Bruce, Marshall Faulk, Kurt Warner, Orlando Pace, and Aeneas Williams were selected to Pro Bowl. Bruce, Warner, and Pace withdrew because of injuries. In separate moves, Torry Holt and Adam Timmerman were added to NFC squad.

Martz appoints Carlos Mainord secondary coach, Feb. 28, replacing Ron Meeks, who moved to the Indianapolis Colts.

Rams select LB Robert Thomas (31), CB Travis Fisher (64), and RB Lamar Gordon (84) with first three selections in 2002 draft, each of whom made significant contributions in initial campaigns. Injuries play big role in 7-9 season as starters miss 45 games. Rams join 2001 Washington Redskins as only teams in league history to win next five games after starting the season 0-5. Marc Bulger becomes third Rams' QB since 1970 (Dieter Brock 7, 1985; Kurt Warner 6, 1999) to post at least six consecutive wins to start a career. Rams stage two double-digit fourth-quarter comebacks for first time since 1989, rallying from 10 down to beat San Diego 28-24, Nov. 10, and 17 points down to be archrival San Francisco 31-20, Dec. 30.

2003
Team names Steve Fairchild offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach, Perry Fewell secondary coach, Frank Falks tight ends coach, and Bob Babich linebackers coach. Through trades and free agency, Rams acquire veterans C Dave Wohlabaugh, G David Loverne, T Kyle Turley, TE Cameron Cleeland, RB Leon Johnson, P Sean Landeta, and S Jason Sehorn. Team selects DT Jimmy Kennedy (12), LB Pisa Tinoisamoa (43), WR Kevin Curtis (74), WR Shawn McDonald (106) and CB DeJuan Groce (107) with first five selections in 11-player draft class.