ATLANTA — Seventeen years to the day after quarterback Tom Brady and the Patriots beat the Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI back in 2002, the future Hall of Famer and Super Bowl regulars did it again. But it wasn’t without a valiant effort from the Rams' defense.
While that unit was stout, quarterback Jared Goff and the offense were unable to find the end zone and fell short of a world title.
Here are seven stats that stood out from Super Bowl LIII against the Patriots:
1. GREG THE LEG
Two weeks after sending his team to Super Bowl LIII with a 57-yard field goal in New Orleans, kicker Greg Zuerlein made the second-longest field goal in Super Bowl history to tie the game at three with 2:15 remaining in the third quarter.
The 53-yard make moved the kicker to eight-for-nine in his three-career playoff tries. It was the Rams only points in the game.
2. FIRST-PASS PICK
Linebacker Cory Littleton picked off Brady’s first pass of the evening after cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman made a nice play, breaking up the 2nd-and-7 look to wideout Chris Hogan.
Littleton is just the fourth Ram ever to earn an interception in the Super Bowl and the first since Super Bowl XIV in 1980.
3. ROOK GETS TO BRADY
Rookie defensive end John Franklin-Myers broke Brady’s postseason sackless streak with a 1st-and-10 strip-sack for a loss of nine late in the first quarter.
Franklin-Myers logged two sacks in his first professional season — he is the fourth Ram to earn a sack in the Super Bowl.
4. MOVING ON UP
A handful of Rams playmakers moved up the club’s all-time postseason ranks in its fourth postseason game since the 2004 season.
Running back Todd Gurley’s 35 yards rushing against the Patriots was enough to move him to the No. 6 spot on L.A’s all-time postseason yards rushing list.
Wide receiver Robert Woods also moved into the No. 6 spot in the club’s postseason reception ranks with the first of his five catches for 70 yards. The 1,000-yard receiver in 2018 has 26 postseason receptions.
Wide receiver Brandin Cooks caught eight passes for a Rams-high 120 yards receiving in the game. The eight grabs for 120 yards in the game also put Cooks in the club’s top-10 for postseason receptions and postseason receiving yards.
Cooks’ 120 yards against his former team was a playoff career high.
5. LONGEST SB PUNT
It was a busy night for punter Johnny Hekker, who kicked it away a franchise Super Bowl-high nine times.
Hekker’s eighth punt of the night went 65 yards from his own end zone to become the longest punt in Super Bowl history. The previous high was 64 yards.
Hekker averaged 46.3 yards punting in the Super Bowl, the veteran’s career-long is 78 yards.
6. THREE QUARTERS, SIX POINTS
Zuerlein’s game-tying field goal late in the third quarter put the game’s point total at six — the lowest point total through three quarters in Super Bowl history.
The Patriots found the end zone with seven minutes remaining in the game with a two-yard carry by running back Sony Michel.
7. GOFF HITS RAMS POSTSEASON TOP FIVE
Goff went 19-of-38, hitting on 50 percent of his passes for 229 yards in his first-career Super Bowl appearance.
Goff’s 229 yards passing was good enough to put the young quarterback in the No. 5 spot from former quarterback Marc Bulger in the Rams’ all-time postseason ranks.