It’s a treat listening to Dick Vermeil talk about anything having to do with football and/or wine.
The former head coach is well-versed in both subjects and recently offered his unique insights with The Bernie Miklasz Show, in which Vermeil described his thinking prior to a pretty famous Rams play call.
While discussing Doug Pederson’s aggressive Super Bowl LII play-calling with Bernie and Michelle Smallmon, Vermeil recalled the brief back-and-forth he had with Mike Martz before the Rams’ final touchdown in Super Bowl XXXIV.
Kurt Warner got the ball at the final two-minute warning with the game tied 16-16 and Coach Vermeil can take it from here:
“Mike was high up in the press box and I’m standing on the sideline. I look up and see Isaac Bruce come out of a formation split to the right and I see a corner five and a half yards off him…I’ve studied enough film to know that guy cannot take Isaac Bruce to the end zone one-on-one.
“So I said, ‘Mike, let’s go after him. Let’s get after him. Do it now.’ It almost ended up being too quick.”
The rest, as they say, is history.
Vermeil also discussed what he did differently with the Rams compared to his first Super Bowl trip with the Eagles, and gave his always insightful analysis into Sunday’s classic game. You can find another excerpt of coach’s talk below, followed by the full interview’s audio:
On learning from his 1981 Super Bowl loss and carrying it into his career’s second half:
“You better grow. You better learn from the things you think you did wrong and learn from the things you think you did right so maybe you can do them both better when you get the other opportunity. The biggest difference in my two teams is number one: I took five Hall of Famers with me on offense all at the same time.
“Three of them are in and Isaac will be and so will Torry. And I took a great offensive coordinator and an offensive staff with Mike Martz and Jim Hanifan and Al Saunders and Wilbert Montgomery and John Ramsdell and John Matzko…And the defensive coordinators that did a great job.
“So I put it all together better. I think the long-range plan was better. And I only had a week to prepare rather than two weeks, so it gave me less time to screw it up. So, overall, it was better. But the number one reason you win that football game is you take some gifted athletes that have been well-prepared and they become the best team on gameday.”