ST. LOUIS — The little tempest last week over whether Jeff Fisher and the St. Louis Rams were practitioners of dirty football subsided, and everything was fine going into Sunday’s meeting with the Bears, won by the Bears, 37-13.
No. No, it wasn’t.
He might have stayed to the high road during the week publicly, but players said that coach John Fox talked to the team — “preached,” according to one member of the defense — about maintaining composure and not getting drawn into shoving matches or other altercations with Rams players intent on inducing a bit of mayhem.
It wasn’t easy.
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“They were trying to be a bully,” said running back Ka’Deem Carey as he was wrapped with an ice bag. “We knew that at the beginning. Man, they play so dirty. One guy was on top of me and started grinding his knee into my knee joint. I pushed him off, and the ref was looking hard at me!”
During the pregame introductions and warmups before the Bears’ destruction of the Rams (4-5), Rams players pointedly moved in the way of Bears players trying to get final work in.
“We knew what it was going to be,” said tight end Zach Miller, whose 87-yard catch-and-run with a swing pass in the first quarter was the Bears’ answer two plays after the Rams opened the scoring with a touchdown on the game's first drive. “We’re over there warming up, and they’re standing in the way of Jay and I and Alshon throwing the football.”
The Rams “did a lot of stuff,” said defensive end Jarvis Jenkins, who added that Sunday was nothing like the bloodbath between the Rams and Washington Redskins when Jenkins played for the latter in 2012. “They might do stuff in between downs, but we stayed away from that.”