1980 Los Angeles Rams Season
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1980 Los Angeles Rams Season
1980 Los Angeles Rams season
OwnerGeorgia Frontiere
Head coachRay Malavasi
General managerDon Klosterman
Home fieldAnaheim Stadium
Division place2nd NFC West
Playoff finishLost Wild Card playoffs (at Cowboys) 13-34
The Rams playing against the New Orleans Saints at Anaheim Stadium in 1980.

The 1980 Los Angeles Rams season was the team's 43rd year with the National Football League (NFL), the 35th season in Los Angeles, and the first season at Anaheim Stadium. The Rams improved from their 9-7 Super Bowl season from a year ago with an 11-5 record. They made the playoffs for the 8th straight season. Coming off a Super Bowl appearance the previous season, the Rams had high hopes of winning the Super Bowl for the first time. After a slow start to the season, the Rams caught fire and won 5 games in a row to sit at 5-2. In week 15, the Rams hosted the Dallas Cowboys on Monday Night Football. In a highly anticipated matchup, the Rams wound up crushing the reigning NFC Champs 38-14. This win clinched a playoff berth for the Rams for the 8th straight season, still a team record. However, their 8th straight playoff trip ended rather quickly, as they lost to the Cowboys in a rematch 34-13 in Dallas.


NFL Draft

1980 Los Angeles Rams draft
Round Pick Player Position College Notes
1 17 Johnnie Johnson  Safety Texas
2 50 Irv Pankey  Offensive Tackle Penn St
3 58 Jewerl Thomas  Running Back San Jose St
3 70 LeRoy Irvin  Cornerback Kansas
      Made roster    +   Pro Football Hall of Fame    *   Made at least one Pro Bowl during career





Regular season


Week Date Opponent Result Overview Attendance
1 September 7, 1980 Detroit Lions L 41-20 In their first regular season game at Anaheim Stadium, Rams' run defense was gashed in this opener as rookie Billy Sims rushed for 153 yards and 3 touchdowns and veteran Dexter Bussey ran for 111 more and a touchdown. Pat Haden passed for 133 yards and 3 INT's before breaking his right index finger late and giving way to Vince Ferragamo.
2 September 11, 1980 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers L 10-9 Vince Ferragamo looked rusty in his first start, throwing 4 INT's. Rams blew several opportunities for touchdowns and Buccaneers won on a late 1-yard touchdown run by QB Doug Williams after a pass-interference call deep in Ram territory.
3 September 21, 1980 Green Bay Packers W 51-21 Rams unveiled their "new look" passing offense in this one as Vince Ferragamo threw for 3 touchdowns and had no INT's. Rams also picked off five passes, two of which were returned for touchdowns by Johnnie Johnson and Rod Perry.
4 September 28, 1980 at New York Giants W 28-7 Ferragamo continued to be efficient, passing for 216 yards and a touchdown. Elvis Peacock ran for 85 yards and 3 touchdowns.
5 October 5, 1980 San Francisco 49ers W 48-26 Rams' offensive machine powered on with 304 yards passing and 4 touchdowns from Ferragamo. Peacock ran for 114 more yards and had a receiving touchdown. Rams ran back two interceptions of Joe Montana for touchdowns, one by Jim Youngblood and one by Nolan Cromwell.
6 October 12, 1980 at St. Louis Cardinals W 21-13 Ferragamo was held in check in this one with only 99 yards passing, but did manage to pass for another touchdown and run for another. Rams running game and defense took care of business, rushing for 244 yards with 115 by Cullen Bryant.
7 October 19, 1980 at San Francisco 49ers W 31-17 Rams offense got back on track, this time on the road, with 4 more touchdown passes from Ferragamo.
8 October 26, 1980 at Atlanta Falcons L 13-10 This early battle for NFC West supremacy was a slugfest from the start. It was won on two big plays near the end, however. The Falcons had a 3rd and 38 from their own 19 before Steve Bartkowski hit Alfred Jackson twice, on a 27-yard pass play to the 46 and, on 4th and 11, the winning 54-yard bomb.
9 November 2, 1980 New Orleans Saints W 45-31 Rams' offense bounced back with five touchdown passes by Ferragamo.
10 November 9, 1980 Miami Dolphins L 35-14 Rams were totally outclassed at home as the Dolphins rolled up 441 yards of offense, 280 rushing. Delvin Williams rushed for 151 yards on only 12 carries and new star QB David Woodley passed for 3 touchdowns and ran for two more.
11 November 16, 1980 at New England Patriots W 17-14 Rams defense gutted out a road win as they rallied from a 14-7 halftime deficit. Elvis Peacock scored the winning touchdown late in the 3rd.
12 November 24, 1980 at New Orleans Saints W 27-7 Another stellar road performance by the defense as the Saints only got 96 yards of total offense. Preston Dennard caught a pair of touchdown passes, one from Ferragamo and one on a halfback pass by Mike Guman. This game introduced the "Aint's" to a national television audience, as ABC cameras found numerous fans in the Louisiana Superdome wore bags over their heads. Hours after the game, the Saints' 12th consecutive loss without a victory in 1980, coach Dick Nolan was fired, the third time a Saints coach was fired immediately after a loss to the Rams (Tom Fears in 1970 and John North in 1975).
13 November 30, 1980 New York Jets W 38-13 Ferragamo passed for four more touchdowns despite throwing 4 interceptions. Peacock ran for 152 yards as the Rams rolled up a season-high 510 yards of offense.
14 December 7, 1980 at Buffalo Bills L 10-7 (OT) The cold of Buffalo proved to be a little too much for the Rams to handle. Ferragamo was hurt in the ribs early in the third quarter by a Ben Williams hit and didn't return. Rams defense kept the Bills out of the end zone, but the Bills won on an overtime FG.
15 December 15, 1980 Dallas Cowboys W 38-14 On a Monday night, the Rams put a serious dent in the Cowboys' hopes of winning the NFC East. Rookie RB Jewerl Thomas, starting in place of an injured Elvis Peacock, ran wild, rushing for 147 yards and a touchdown and Ferragamo passed for three more.
16 December 21, 1980 Atlanta Falcons W 20-17 (OT) Ferragamo rallied the Rams from a 14-3 halftime deficit with a touchdown pass (giving him a then Ram-record 30 for the season) and Jewerl Thomas scored on a 37-yard run, but the star of the overtime was Frank Corral, handling both the punting and kicking duties. Midway through the overtime, Corral pinned the Falcons deep into their territory with a 65-yard punt, making up for shanking an 11-yard punt earlier in the overtime that almost led to a Falcon field goal. On the ensuing series on 3rd down, QB Steve Bartkowski was hit on a blitz by Joe Harris, fumbled, and the Rams recovered on the 6-yard line. Corral then resumed his placekicking duty and booted a 23-yard FG for the win.

Season summary

Week 1 vs Lions


Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
Wildcard December 28, 1980 at Dallas Cowboys L 34-13


NFC West
Atlanta Falcons(1) 12 4 0 .750 5-1 10-2 405 272 L1
Los Angeles Rams(5) 11 5 0 .688 5-1 9-3 424 289 W2
San Francisco 49ers 6 10 0 .375 2-4 4-8 320 415 L2
New Orleans Saints 1 15 0 .063 0-6 0-12 291 487 L1

See also

Other Anaheim-based teams in 1980


  1. ^ "1980 Los Angeles Rams draftees". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved 2014.


External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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