1936-1945 - The Cleveland Years

History: The Rams have always been challenged by the Bears

The Rams and the Chicago Bears have a lengthy history, but not one that Rams fans’ would like to dwell on. Chicago has beaten the Rams 52 of 91 meetings. The best way to sum up the past matchups is that the Bears have had many long winning streaks with the Rams finding few wins in between.

The two teams played against each other even when the Rams were in Cleveland. From 1937-1945, the Bears defeated the Rams in 11 out of 16 games. The first few in 1937 were understandable since the Rams were just establishing a presence in the NFL. But the most humiliating loss came just a few years later in 1942, when the Bears shut out the Rams at Wrigley Field, 47-0. QB Sid Luckman just tore through the Rams’ defense. Although, the Rams did get the last laugh while they were in Cleveland. The 1945 season was the Rams’ last in Cleveland, but it was also their only championship year while staying at “C-Town,” and this included two victories over the Bears, 17-0 at League Park and 41-21 at Wrigley Field.

The results weren’t much better when they moved to Los Angeles. Interestingly enough, the only two playoff games between the Bears and Rams occurred during the Los Angeles era. The first game was on December 17, 1950 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Although the defense created some turnovers during this game, the game ball went to Tom Fears. The star wide receiver made life much easier for quarterback Bob Waterfield, reeling in seven receptions for 198 yards and three touchdowns. The Rams would move on to the championship game with a 24-14 victory over the Bears.

On January 12, 1986 at Soldier Field, the Bears got. The teams featured two of the best running backs in the league, and perhaps the best to ever play the game in Eric Dickerson and Walter Payton. However, they both combined for only 78 rushing yards on 35 rushing attempts due to the superior defenses that were involved in this game. It was truly a defensive game, one in which the Rams lost 24-0.

Ever since moving to St. Louis in 1995, both teams have played against each other a total of 12 times. The series has been tied at 6-6 in that timespan, but mainly it’s because both teams have fielded some terrible teams. That’s not to say all years were awful.

One game that comes to mind was back in 2003, which was the last time the Rams produced a winning season. This game was much closer than it should have been since the Rams were 7-3, while the Bears were 3-7. Simple mistakes made this game too close such as a blown special teams coverage, which allowed CB/PR R.W. McQuarters to return a punt 60 yards for a touchdown, giving the Bears a 7-3 lead early in the second quarter. Two Marc Bulger touchdowns and a Jeff Wilkins field goal later, the Rams were ahead 20-14.

However, the Bears refused to go away and took when QB Chris Chandler found WR Dez White for an 11-yard touchdown pass midway through the fourth quarter. Down 21-20, the Rams drove the ball downfield just enough to allow Wilkins to seal the game with a 31-yard field goal with just 38 seconds left on the clock. The Rams squeaked by with a 23-21 victory.

After that game, the Rams went on a four-game consecutive game losing streak against the Bears from the span of 2006-2012. The most notable loss was in 2012, where a single win could have tipped the Rams into the playoffs. That said, the Bears were a pretty dominant team and finished with a 10-6 record. The result wasn’t pretty since the Rams were held to just two field goals and finished with a 23-6 loss.

The winless drought was broken two years ago in the 2013 season when the Bears came to the Edward Jones Dome. The Rams may have won 41-21, but the majority of the points put on the board came from the ground game. Backup quarterback Kellen Clemens struggled, completing 10 of his 22 passes for 167 yards and one touchdown. Benny Cunningham, Zac Stacy and Tavon Austin all combined for 261 rushing yards and three touchdowns.

The Rams find themselves once again needing a crucial win over a NFC North team this season. History suggests that the Rams may walk away with a win, and thankfully it’s a home game. However, Chicago isn’t too far away from St. Louis and Bears fans have been known to make an appearance at the Edward Jones Dome. Regardless, it is imperative for the Rams to win if they want to make a postseason run.

Source: Footballdb.com, Pro-sports-reference.com

You can follow Johnny Gomez on Twitter @Johnny5not6. Be sure to follow Rams Talk on Twitter @TalkRams.

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