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April 2000

April 2000


Curtain Call

For NFL Coach of the Year Dick Vermeil, a 14-Year layoff from coaching and an undying commitment to outwork his opponents finally paid the ultimate dividends
by: Gene Frenette
Florida Times-Union
© April 2000

After two long seasons in St. Louis, the experiment was failing badly. Dick Vermeil, in his attempt to reinvent himself as a football coach and erase the lingering, distasteful image that haunted him when he left the Philadelphia Eagles in 1982, appeared to be hitting another dead end.

The 1998 season ended with the St. Louis Rams losing six of their last seven games. Their 5-11 record, preceded by a 4-12 mark in Vermeil's first season as Rams head coach, was only half the problem. Several players also skipped the end-of-season team meeting, leaving many to wonder if Vermeil - after a 14-year exile from coaching - made the worst decision of his life by leaving the television booth to return to the sideline.

"I knew a couple players that missed the meeting weren't going to come back anyway," says Vermeil. "The oth....The full article can only be seen by subscribers.
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