2002 St. Louis Rams season
OwnerGeorgia Frontiere
Head coachMike Martz
Home fieldEdward Jones Dome
Results
Record7–9
Division place2nd NFC West
Playoff finishDid not qualify
Pro BowlersRB Marshall Faulk
T Orlando Pace

The 2002 season was the St. Louis Rams' 65th in the National Football League, their eighth in St. Louis and their third under head coach Mike Martz.

Fresh off their trip from Super Bowl XXXVI which ended with a loss to the 11–5 Patriots,[1] the Rams collapsed and missed the playoffs for the first time since 1998, losing their first five games.

The season saw the emergence of new quarterback Marc Bulger, who filled in for an injured Kurt Warner and Jamie Martin. The Rams won six straight games where Bulger started and finished, but his season ended in Week 16 at Seattle.

However, the Rams did end the season on a high note with a 31–20 victory at home against the 49ers in Week 17 and they finished the season with a 7–9 record.

History

The years leading up to the 2002 season had the making of a roller coaster dynasty. It all began in the offseason before the 1999 season.[2] They were able to trade for Marshall Faulk who was arguably the best running back of the time. They signed a franchise quarterback, Trent Green, who knew how to lead a team. They drafted a young wide receiver prospect, Torry Holt, and just like that their offense is completely new. Fast forward to the preseason when Green experienced a season-ending injury and all the fans thought the season was over. In comes 27 year-old Kurt Warner, who nobody knew about and who has barely played in the NFL.

Offseason

Additions Subtractions
FS Chad Cota (Colts) LB Brian Allen (Panthers)
FB Chris Hetherington (Panthers) S Rich Coady (Titans)
WR Terrence Wilkins (Colts) LB Mark Fields (Panthers)
LB Jamie Duncan (Buccaneers) LB London Fletcher (Bills)
WR Troy Edwards (Steelers) WR Az-Zahir Hakim (Lions)
P Mitch Berger (Vikings) RB Robert Holcombe (Titans)
TE/LS Jeff Robinson (Cowboys)
T Ryan Tucker (Browns)

2002 Expansion Draft

Main article: 2002 NFL expansion draft

St. Louis Rams selected during the Expansion Draft
Round Overall Name Position Expansion Team
—— 18 Brian Allen Linebacker Houston Texans

Draft

Main article: 2002 NFL Draft

2002 St. Louis Rams draft
Round Pick Player Position College Notes
1 31 Robert Thomas  LB UCLA
2 64 Travis Fisher  CB Central Florida
3 84 Lamar Gordon  RB North Dakota State
3 95 Eric Crouch  WR Nebraska
4 130 Travis Scott  G Arizona St
5 167 Courtland Bullard  LB Ohio St
6 205 Steve Bellisari  QB Ohio St
7 243 Chris Massey  FB Marshall
      Made roster    †   Pro Football Hall of Fame    *   Made at least one Pro Bowl during career

Roster

2002 St. Louis Rams final roster
Quarterbacks

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen

Linebackers

Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists


Practice squad


Rookies in italics

Regular season

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance
1 September 8 at Denver Broncos L 16–23 0–1 Invesco Field 75,710
2 September 15 New York Giants L 21–26 0–2 Edward Jones Dome 65,932
3 September 23 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers L 14–26 0–3 Raymond James Stadium 65,652
4 September 29 Dallas Cowboys L 10–13 0–4 Edward Jones Dome 66,165
5 October 6 at San Francisco 49ers L 13–37 0–5 3Com Park 67,853
6 October 13 Oakland Raiders W 28–13 1–5 Edward Jones Dome 66,070
7 October 20 Seattle Seahawks W 37–20 2–5 Edward Jones Dome 65,931
8 Bye
9 November 3 at Arizona Cardinals W 27–14 3–5 Sun Devil Stadium 47,819
10 November 10 San Diego Chargers W 28–24 4–5 Edward Jones Dome 66,093
11 November 18 Chicago Bears W 21–16 5–5 Edward Jones Dome 66,250
12 November 24 at Washington Redskins L 17–20 5–6 FedExField 79,823
13 December 1 at Philadelphia Eagles L 3–10 5–7 Veterans Stadium 65,552
14 December 8 at Kansas City Chiefs L 10–49 5–8 Arrowhead Stadium 78,601
15 December 15 Arizona Cardinals W 30–28 6–8 Edward Jones Dome 65,939
16 December 22 at Seattle Seahawks L 10–30 6–9 Seahawks Stadium 63,953
17 December 30 San Francisco 49ers W 31–20 7–9 Edward Jones Dome 66,118

Note: Intra-division opponents are in bold text.

Game Summaries

Week 11: vs. Chicago Bears

Week 11: Chicago Bears at St. Louis Rams
1 2 34Total
Bears 0 6 7316
Rams 7 7 0721

at Edward Jones Dome, St. Louis, Missouri

  • Date: November 18, 2002
  • Game time: 9:00 p.m.
  • Game weather: None (indoor stadium)
  • Game attendance: 66,250
  • Referee: Gerry Austin (34)
  • TV announcers (ABC): Al Michaels, John Madden and Melissa Stark
  • Recap, Game Book
Game information

Notable facts

This season marked the decline of Kurt Warner and the end of "The Greatest Show On Turf". This also marked the first season where the Rams did not make the playoffs under Mike Martz.

Star running back Marshall Faulk started in just 10 games due to ankle injury he suffered against San Diego. This weakened the Rams' running game and he finished the season with just 953 yards rushing, his lowest since 1996, where he rushed for 587 yards. At that time, he was a member of the Indianapolis Colts. His 953 rushing yards this season ended his streak of five straight 1,000 yard rushing seasons. Despite a down year, Faulk was still voted to play in the Pro Bowl after the season for the seventh and final time in his Hall of Fame career.

For the season, the team changed their uniforms, removing the side panels on the jersey.

Standings

NFC West
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
(4) San Francisco 49ers 10 6 0 .625 5–1 8–4 367 351 L1
St. Louis Rams 7 9 0 .438 4–2 5–7 316 369 W1
Seattle Seahawks 7 9 0 .438 2–4 5–7 355 369 W3
Arizona Cardinals 5 11 0 .313 1–5 5–7 262 417 L3

h St. Louis finished ahead of Seattle in the NFC West based on better division record (4–2 to 2–4).

References

  1. ^ Martin, Jill. ‘2002: When the Patriots Were a Cinderella Team.’; Cable News Network, January 24, 2019
  2. ^ Bryn Swartz (October 3, 2017). "The Greatest Show On Turf: The Dynasty That Never Was". Bleacher Report.