49ers victory vs. Rams instantly becomes huge part of Niners lore

Deebo Samuel (19) of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
Deebo Samuel (19) of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images) /

51. Final/OT. 27. 42. 24

Some things just instantly become team lore. The circumstances and method behind the 49ers’ 27-24 victory over the Rams in Week 18 are just the latest. 

As San Francisco 49ers fans, we’ve been blessed to be on the right side of some pretty incredible instances of NFL lore throughout the history of the franchise.

We all know some of the most influential moments in Niners history such as “The Catch” (also “The Catch II” and “The Catch III” since we have no originality naming things), the winning touchdown drive in Super Bowl XXIII capped with quarterback Joe Montana’s pass to wide receiver John Taylor, and “The Stop” by linebacker Dan Bunz right before the goal line in Super Bowl XVI.

More recently, we’ve been blessed with plays such as “The Pick At The Stick” and linebacker Dre Greenlaw‘s tackle against the Seattle Seahawks to make sure the 49ers had the NFC West and the No. 1 seed in the bag back in 2019.

Well, we can add Week 18’s overtime win against the Los Angeles Rams to this list, the circumstances surrounding this game and the epic fightback by San Francisco mean this is now a part of 49ers lore instantly.

Read More49ers clinch playoffs with a thrilling OT win vs. Rams

Down 17-0 and being absolutely dominated by a Los Angeles outfit that had something to play for, the Niners looked like they’d be watching the playoffs on TV for another year.

Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo was playing poorly, while Rams quarterback Matt Stafford looked unstoppable.

Even with the lightbulb coming on after halftime, and San Francisco fighting back to 17-17, the game looked dead and buried when Garoppolo threw an interception into tough coverage late, and the Rams responded to take the lead.

But give Garoppolo credit for coming through in the absolute clutch. With the season on the line and well under two minutes on the clock, he orchestrated the quick reply and ensured the 49ers took the game to overtime. Kicking the field goal meant it was the Rams turn to try to come through in the clutch, but the Niners held on for a famous victory.

There are so many plot points to this game. The season on the line with a two-minute drill, the fact the Niners did not lead at any point of this game until kicking the field goal to take the lead in overtime, wide receiver Deebo Samuel doing Deebo Samuel things, rookie cornerback Ambry Thomas announcing himself to the NFL world with the clinching interception in overtime and second-year wideout Jauan Jennings picking the best time he could to have his breakout performance.

This game deserves its place on the shelf of San Francisco lore. Nobody will place it as the top moment in franchise history, but it’s no less deserving all the same.

The 49ers haven’t just won, they won in the best way possible. After coming back from 17-0 down in a road game against a playoff team, they’ll believe they can take on the world .

And in the playoffs, a little confidence could take a team quite a long way into the postseason.

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