The Greatest Show on the Turf

December 18, 2021

After twenty years in St. Louis, “Hollywood’s Team” have finally come home.

Like the city itself, the Los Angeles Rams have a reputation for both grit and glamour. The team has its big stars, both on the field and on the big screen. But the Rams also have blue collar guts, with a strong defensive history and historic moments like Jack Youngblood’s winning play against Tampa Bay on a broken leg in their roster.
Although the Rams started in Cleveland, they made their name in their first 20 years in Hollywood. Sure, they were skilled, winning four division championships in seven years. But their popularity was also because they were, in many ways, the first modern franchise. They were the first team with a TV contract. The first to integrate. The first to add insignia to their helmets, making them instantly recognizable, on-field or on-screen. The first to reach a million fans. They were wildly popular.
Although their success on the field drifted in the ‘50s, the Rams remained the Greatest Show on the Turf. In the late ‘60s, the Rams’ on-field glamour sparkled once again with the arrival of the Fearsome Foursome, with Deacon Jones, Merlin Olsen, Rosey Grier and Lamar Lundy forming what some call the best defensive line of all time. They had their ups and downs, but the Rams stayed strong through the ‘80s with players like Youngblood, making it to the play-offs seven times that decade.
As the ‘90s creeped in, however, the team struggled on-field, and attendance numbers finally declined. The team moved to St. Louis in the hope of spicing things up, but in their new—but not rightful—home, their victories declined more and more each year. Success was sporadic, making one of the most surprising comebacks in NFL history with their ‘99 Superbowl win, only to later close out the first decade of the 2000s as one of the worst teams in the NFL.
After their eventful move back to LA in 2016, though, things started looking up, with the Rams seeing the Super Bowl (and their previous Super Bowl rivals, the New England Patriots once again. It’s hard to say for sure, but a post-Covid move into the new SoFi Stadium—the most expensive stadium ever built, with a video board that can be seen from the stars, just in case any glamorous globetrotters want to watch the Rams from the window of their plane—looks good for the future of Hollywood’s Team.

Tagged: Football, NFL