Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports
The special teams unit kept things interesting for the St. Louis Rams early, creating favorable starts for the defense. Hekker boomed his first punt—which Mike McNeill seemingly recovered at the 1-yard line—into the end zone. The kickoff coverage was aided by Darren Bates in the first half, though.
Bates brought Javier Arenas down at the eight on the only non-touchback kick of the half.
An ill-advised Eugene Sims taunting penalty in the fourth quarter put the Rams in a poor position to get ahead on the scoreboard. They had 95 yards of real estate to cover in a tie game with just about five minutes to go.
William Hayes’ unnecessary roughness preceded Sims’ flag. The most concerning thing about those two penalties is that they were committed by 27-year-old and 28-year-old veterans.
Fortunately, Hayes was in on the sack that iced the game in St. Louis’ favor.
Benny Cunningham returned two kicks for 46 yards. Austin returned one punt for one yard.
Greg Zuerlein was 4-of-4 from the field and converted his PAT. Hekker covered 147 yards on three punts.
Jamal Collier graduated from Washington University in St. Louis and is now a law student who covers the St. Louis Rams in his spare time. His work also appears on Yahoo!. Follow him on Twitter: