1983 Los Angeles Rams season

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1983 Los Angeles Rams season
Head coachJohn Robinson
OwnerGeorgia Frontiere
Home fieldAnaheim Stadium
Division place2nd NFC West
Playoff finishWon Wild Card (Cowboys) 24–17
Lost Divisional (Redskins) 7–51

The 1983 Los Angeles Rams season was the team's 46th year with the National Football League and the 38th season in the city of Los Angeles. The franchise drafted a future Hall of Fame Running Back in Eric Dickerson. The season saw the team attempt to improve on its 2-7 record from 1982. The team started out 5-2 before splitting their next 4 games and then lost at home to Washington to sit at 7-5. They would split their last 4 games to finish 9-7 and make the playoffs for the first time since 1980 after a 2-year absence. In the playoffs, they defeated the Cowboys 24-17 in Dallas to advance to the Divisional Round. However, in the game, the Rams were annihilated 7–51 by the Redskins, who would move on to the Super Bowl, only to lose to the other Los Angeles NFL team, the Los Angeles Raiders, 38–9.


NFL Draft[edit]

1983 Los Angeles Rams draft
Round Pick Player Position College Notes
1 2 Eric Dickerson *   Running back Southern Methodist
2 32 Henry Ellard *  Wide receiver Fresno State
2 36 Mike Wilcher  Linebacker North Carolina
      Made roster    †   Pro Football Hall of Fame    *   Made at least one Pro Bowl during career




1983 Los Angeles Rams staff
Front office

Head coaches

Offensive coaches

Defensive coaches

Special teams coaches



1983 Los Angeles Rams roster

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen


Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists


Practice squad {{{practice_squad}}}

Rookies in italics

Regular season[edit]

Eric Dickerson[edit]

While he considered going to the Los Angeles Express in the United States Football League, Dickerson decided to go into the National Football League at the advice of his mother because the NFL had been around longer. He was selected second overall in the 1983 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams. An immediate pro success, he established rookie records for most rushing attempts (390), most rushing yards gained (1,808) and most touchdowns rushing (18), including another two receiving touchdowns.[3] His efforts earned him All-Pro, Pro Bowl, Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year honors.[4]


Week Date Opponent Result Summary Attendance
1 September 4, 1983 at New York Giants W 16–6 Vince Ferragamo tossed 2 touchdown passes to new TE Mike Barber and rookie Eric Dickerson rushed for 91 yards on 31 carries in his Ram debut. Rams were also buoyed by the defense, which sacked Giants QB Scott Brunner five times and intercepted 3 passes.
2 September 11, 1983 New Orleans Saints W 30–27 In a barnburner of a game, the Saints took a late 4th quarter lead, 27–21, on a Ken Stabler touchdown pass to Eugene Goodlow. After stalling on their next drive, the Rams pinned the Saints deep and punter Russell Erxleben chose to run out of the end zone for a safety. However, Ferragamo and the Rams took the free kick and drove to the winning score on a 3-yard run by Dickerson, his third of the day.
3 September 18, 1983 at Green Bay Packers L 27–24 Rams fought back from a 17–3 halftime deficit with 21 unanswered points in the third. Ferragamo threw for 2 touchdowns and Dickerson rushed for another, but the Packers came back in the fourth and won a late FG.
4 September 25, 1983 at New York Jets L 27–24 Dickerson ripped off an 85-yard touchdown run on the Rams' second play from scrimmage and finished with 192 yards rushing, but the Jets prevailed in OT as Richard Todd passed for 446 yards and two touchdowns. This game was marred by a brawl between Rams OT Jackie Slater and Jets DE Mark Gastineau after Gastineau did his infamous "sack dance".
5 October 2, 1983 Detroit Lions W 21–10 New superstar Dickerson paved the way as Rams got back on winning track, rushing for 199 yards and all three Rams touchdowns.
6 October 9, 1983 at San Francisco 49ers W 10–7 Rams gained an early upper hand in the NFC West in a tough defensive struggle on the road. Dickerson rushed for 142 yards and the Rams only touchdown
7 October 16, 1983 Atlanta Falcons W 27–21 Rams fought back from a 21–7 deficit as Ferragamo hit Mike Guman on a late touchdown pass. Dickerson was held in check (64 yards), but scored two more touchdowns.
8 October 23, 1983 San Francisco 49ers L 45–35 49ers prevailed in a slugfest, overcoming 5 touchdown passes by Ferragamo and 144 yards rushing by Dickerson. The 49ers rallied from a 28–17 deficit by scoring 28 fourth quarter points, the go-ahead touchdown coming when DE Dwaine Board recovered a Dickerson fumble in the end zone. Joe Montana tossed 3 touchdowns for the winners.
9 October 30, 1983 at Miami Dolphins L 30–14 Dolphins pulled away in the second half behind rookie QB Dan Marino, who passed for 2 touchdowns and ran for another.
10 November 6, 1983 Chicago Bears W 21–14 Rams rolled to a 14–0 halftime lead and held on. Dickerson had 127 yards and 2 more touchdowns
11 November 14, 1983 at Atlanta Falcons W 36–13 Dickerson and backup Barry Redden both went over 100 yards rushing and Ferragamo passed for two touchdowns in this Monday night rout.
12 November 20, 1983 Washington Redskins L 42–20 Rams were blown out at home by the defending Super Bowl champs. The Redskins rolled up 479 yards of offense and got 3 rushing touchdowns from John Riggins and 4 FG's from Mark Moseley.
13 November 27, 1983 Buffalo Bills W 41–17 Ferragamo passed for 3 touchdowns and Dickerson ran for 125 yards and another touchdown. CB Johnnie Johnson sealed the victory with a 60-yard INT return for a touchdown late.
14 December 4, 1983 at Philadelphia Eagles L 13–9 In a tough game in the cold at Philadelphia, the Rams couldn't crack the end zone and the Eagles won on a Ron Jaworski touchdown pass late.
15 December 11, 1983 New England Patriots L 21–7 This was a sloppy clunker for the Rams at home as Mosi Tatupu ran for all three Patriots touchdowns and the Rams lost six fumbles. The loss eliminated the Rams from the NFC West division race.
16 December 18, 1983 at New Orleans Saints W 26–24 Needing a win for a playoff berth, the Rams failed to cross the goal line on offense, but were helped by defense and special teams on the road. In a nip-and-tuck battle, the Saints scored first on a Stabler touchdown pass. The Rams then ran off 16 unanswered points on a Jack Youngblood safety, a punt return touchdown by Henry Ellard, and an INT return touchdown by Johnnie Johnson. The Saints got a touchdown run by backup QB Dave Wilson and a FG, but then Nolan Cromwell returned an INT for a touchdown. After the Saints scored their final touchdown to go up by one, Mike Lansford won it for the Rams on a late FG.

September 25, 1983[edit]

Week 4: Los Angeles Rams 24, New York Jets 27[edit]

Game summary
1 2 34OTTotal
Rams 14 0 37024
Jets 7 7 73327

at Shea Stadium, Flushing, New York


Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
Wildcard December 26, 1983 at Dallas Cowboys W 24–17
Divisional January 1, 1984 at Washington Redskins L 51–7

December 26, 1983[edit]

NFC: Los Angeles Rams 24, Dallas Cowboys 17[edit]

Game summary
1 2 34Total
Rams 7 0 71024
Cowboys 0 7 3717

at Texas Stadium, Irving, Texas

January 1, 1984[edit]

NFC: Washington Redskins 51, Los Angeles Rams 7[edit]

Game summary
1 2 34Total
Rams 0 7 007
Redskins 17 21 6751

at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium, Washington, D.C.


NFC West
San Francisco 49ers(2) 10 6 0 .625 4–2 8–4 432 293 W3
Los Angeles Rams(5) 9 7 0 .563 5–1 8–4 361 344 W1
New Orleans Saints 8 8 0 .500 2–4 7–5 319 337 L1
Atlanta Falcons 7 9 0 .438 1–5 4–8 370 389 W1

Awards and honors[edit]

See also[edit]

Other Anaheim–based teams in 1983


  1. ^ "1983 Los Angeles Rams draftees". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved October 4, 2014.
  2. ^ Associated Press (March 1, 1983). "Transactions". The Evening News. Retrieved October 3, 2014.
  3. ^ Eric's Days as a Ram, http://www.ericdickerson29.com/rams.htm Archived 2007-10-14 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Eric Dickerson: Pro Football Hall of Fame, http://www.profootballhof.com/hof/member.jsp?PLAYER_ID=55

External links[edit]