St. Louis' win over the New Orleans Saints was essential not only to Robert Quinn's personal reputation around the league, but also for the Rams defense as a whole.
When Quinn sacked Drew Brees (his 15th sack of the season at the time), forced a fumble and recovered the fumble on the same play, Jeff Fisher stated that it was probably the best defensive play he's ever seen.
NFL writers, such as Sports Illustrated's Peter King, followed Fisher's lead by praising Quinn for the breathtaking play:
Quinn rushed quarterback Drew Brees from his right end position and was immediately chipped by tight end Jimmy Graham. Then left tackle Charles Brown and left guard Ben Grubbs teamed to knock Quinn to the ground. They probably thought the play was over, but Quinn crawled for about 2 yards, got up and strip-sacked Brees, all in just 2.71 seconds. Quinn capped it off by recovering the fumble.
Quinn was already part of the Defensive Player of the Year discussion, but that one play will ensure that the voters think of Quinn before casting their ballots. The play upgraded Quinn from a possibility to a favorite for the award.
But the game did more than fortify Quinn's personal stats. It proved that the St. Louis defense is talented enough to stand up to the elite offenses of the NFL.
The St. Louis defense is full of young talent (Alec Ogletree, Michael Brockers, Janoris Jenkins, T.J. McDonald), and these types of wins are exactly what they need to build confidence and develop into big time players.
Steven Gerwel is the longest-tenured Rams Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report and serves as the Rams' game-day correspondent. You can find more of Gerwel's work by visiting his writer profile or by following him on Twitter.