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Where Are They Now? Rams Legend & special teams captain Tim Tyrrell 

It has to be called special teams for a reason, right? It takes special guys to play it. It takes a really special guy to be a standout doing so. And Tim Tyrrell was that guy.

Playing against the Falcons running back in the same division for two and a half seasons, Rams head coach John Robinson noticed that. And so when Tyrrell, Atlanta's special teams captain, suddenly became available in 1986, he brought him to Los Angeles.

"Halfway through the season, (Falcons head coach Dan Henning) calls me and says, 'Tim, we've got to let you go. We've got to put you on waivers, but we're picking you up tomorrow,'" Tyrrell said. "We played in the NFC West and against the Los Angeles Rams all the time, and they saw me on waivers and picked me up. The Falcons were trying to kind of hide me, I guess that's the way they did it back then. Anyways, the Rams found me and I got to go to L.A.

"When I got there, I sat down in Jack Faulkner's office, he was the director of pro personnel, and in walks Coach John Robinson. And I'm like, 'Oh, my God.' Literally, I thought there was a halo over his head. And he goes, 'Hey, Tim. Coach John Robinson, how you doing?' And he shakes my hand. I'm like, 'I know who you are, dude. Holy cow!'

"And this is what he says to me, 'Timmy, we think you're one of the top special teamers in the league. We're lucky we got ya. Find yourself a place. You're here to stay.' To hear those words… this was the third time I was cut. So to hear that was amazing. I'm telling you, if I was my own agent, I would have played for free. They wanted to pay me a little something, so I guess I had to take it."

Back for his first full season with Los Angeles in 1989, Tyrrell's bio in the Rams media guide was brief and to the point. 'Displays little regard for his own well-being.'

"Exactly. Literally, there was zero fear," Tyrrell said. "Nothing but the adrenaline, which is probably like a drug addict. And listen, I'm not saying I won all the battles because I didn't. I laid there unconscious (one game) in San Francisco. They thought I killed myself. I laid there for about three minutes not moving. They stood me up walked me to the sideline.

"But I just thrived on knocking the hell out of myself. I don't know, I lit 'em up. Coach Robinson used to tell me before the game, we'd huddle up (on the sideline) and he'd come in and say, 'Timmy, set the tone. Set the tone.' And that means light somebody up as we're kicking off. And so that's what I would do. Or I would try to anyways.

"And I played some fullback when Barry Redden went down with Eric Dickerson (in the backfield), which was amazing. But to set the tone, that was my reputation. I was our special teams Player of the Year in 1987, and was the first alternate in '87 and '88 for the Pro Bowl. I loved being on the team. I loved getting in there on offense and stuff, but I loved special teams."

Tyrrell had career-highs – actually, nearly career totals that season – with 11 carries for 44 yards, six receptions for 59 yards, and six kick returns for a 19.3-yard average. But his fondest memory from 1987 occurred off the field during the preseason when the Rams traveled to England to play against Denver.

"We were there for a whole week and stayed at the Mayfair, this beautiful hotel in London," Tyrrell said. "I'm walking through the lobby getting ready to go to a meeting, and I looked to my left and see the lead singer of AC/DC. I go over and say, 'Excuse me. Are you Brian Johnson?' He says, 'I sure am, mate. How ya doing?' And I'm like, 'Holy s_ _t!' Of all the people. 'What are you doing here, Brian?' 'Oh, me and the boys are finishing up an album.'

"Oh, my God. I know every song. I know every word to every song. It's scary. I'm a stalker. And so I'm like, 'Brian, I'm a big fan. I've got to go to a meeting, but are you staying in the hotel? Can I meet you for a drink or something?' And so I go to practice and come back and I'm laying down, and my phone rings. 'Tim? Brian here. Me and the boys are going to dinner. We'd like to know if you want to join us.' I'm like, 'Are you kidding me? Yeah!' So I go meet him in the lobby with another guy, (tight end) Darren Long.

"We go to a sushi restaurant, and I walk in and know everybody. I'm sitting by Angus Young, and 40 years later I'm still friends with the band. I go to Brian's house all the time. He's had more of my friends backstage in the last 40 years than you could count."

Going on to finish his career with Buffalo and Pittsburgh, Tyrrell was practically dumbfounded that he spent even one game in the NFL, much less play in 66 games over six years. Nearly half of them with the Rams.

"Coach Robinson, this was a guy that just got the absolute best out of guys. I had to pinch myself for being there. It was such a thrill," Tyrrell said. "I just love the game. I love not just the game, but everything about it. Everything that came with it. I played the game with a tremendous amount of gratitude and with the most intensity you could possibly get, I think. I don't think I could've turned it up any more.

"And the biggest thing is just being an influence on people, as well. A grateful influence that we have the opportunity to kind of carry forward what was given to us. Everything that I've ever accomplished or have done, it was nothing that I did. When you look back at it, it's like why me? How did I get to be so lucky? Seriously, I do not boast about that. I am so humbled that God gave me this opportunity to experience."

Making his home in Chicago, for the past 14 years, Tyrrell has teamed up with Gene Ricciardi to form Voltz Energy Partners. It's a company that provides commercial, industrial, and retail businesses with a way to reduce utility expenses.

"I was always just a team guy and it carried over into the business world. With football, I was so intense. In the business world, evidently, you're not allowed to hit your employees," Tyrrell laughed. "I'm like, 'Well, I just spent 30 years hitting guys, and they encouraged that.' And they're like, 'No, you can't do it here.' 'Are you sure?'  And once I got that toned down, I really learned how to kind of take what I learned in football and carry it over, not just talking about it, but living it.

"We renegotiate gas and electric prices. About 15 years ago, they deregulated electric in 15 states, meaning you can now buy your electric from different suppliers," Tyrrell said. "We have about 100 million square feet under contract, about 500 corporate buildings, big buildings. That's a lot of space that we've renegotiated their pricing, and we get a sliver of what we saved them.

"Gene does the quoting and I'm doing business development along with him. There's about 50 suppliers in Illinois, and we work with probably 10 of them. You have a license to do it, and so Gene is the guy who has the license. I'm the guy who just has a million contacts."

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