Torry Holt knows that he’s lucky. He was a key part of one of the best offenses in NFL history – the St. Louis Rams’ Greatest Show on Turf – and he won a Super Bowl.
Not many former NFL players can say that.
But he also know what it feels like to lose a Super Bowl. In the end, both of those games – the epic 23-16 win over the Titans and the epic 20-17 loss to the Patriots – stick with him.
“Oh, man, they both do. I really cherish the win, but it hurts me a lot when I think about that second Super Bowl and that loss,” Holt said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “Give credit to the Patriots for coming out and playing hard and winning that game, but for us, that was a really good football team that we had, and for us not to be able to bring home the championship really hurt. So I think about them both. Definitely think about them both. But I played in two, (and) I’m glad I was able to win one to kind of balance it out, the fact that we lost that second one.”
Former Rams coach Dick Vermeil retired after the Super Bowl XXXIV win over Tennessee, only to return to the sidelines in 2001 with the Chiefs. Mike Martz took over for the Rams, who played at a high level for several more years.
But they never won another Super Bowl.
Would they have had Vermeil stayed?
“I don’t know,” Holt said. “I will say this with Vermeil as our head coach: that was good chemistry. He allowed his assistant coaches to coach, and he was the head coach. So I don’t know. I would like to think with him staying as head coach we would have won more, but as you saw when he did leave, Coach Martz was able to get us back in position to go back to the Super Bowl. We just didn’t take care of business. The Patriots just made one more play than we did. But with Vermeil as head coach – fantastic head coach. Great leader, great leader of men, great leader of his coaches. So I was really fortunate and glad that we were able to win a Super Bowl with him as head coach and unfortunately we wasn’t able to do that with Coach Martz, but Coach Martz was a fantastic head coach as well.”
Holt, 41, played for the Rams from 1999 to 2008, where he was a seven-time Pro Bowler and had eight consecutive 1,100-yard seasons. He also led the NFL in receiving in 2000 and 2003, with 1,635 and 1,696 yards, respectively.
He, along with Kurt Warner, Marshall Faulk, Isaac Bruce and others, will go down as one of the most prolific offenses in NFL history.
“After that Super Bowl loss, we still was able to play good football and play at a high level on the offensive side of the ball,” Holt said. “It wasn’t like we just fell totally off the map. We just never got back to a championship, and that’s the thing that I hate the most: with all that talent that we had and with Coach Martz calling plays, I just wish we could have gotten back to more Super Bowls. But it didn’t happen. But we didn’t fall off the face of the earth. We just never got back to the big dance. But it was a really good offense, ton of skill players, particularly at the receiver position, and a big credit to our offensive line for the blocking that they did to allow our quarterbacks to hang in the pocket as long as they could for some of the deeper, big throws that we took a chance on down the football field. That’s the thing that I hate the most: was the fact that we didn’t win more Super Bowls with that ton of talent that we had on those teams.”