Jeff Fisher's gamble pays off big against Seahawks


There is an alternate reality in which Jeff Fisher is taking a monstrous amount of heat on Monday.

Had Johnny Hekker dropped the snap or sailed a throw, or Benny Cunningham grown a pair of stone hands or tripped over his own feet, Fisher would be in serious hot water.

Silver: The St. Louis Surprise!
With his team on the verge of blowing it, Jeff Fisher dug into his bag of tricks and stunned Seattle. Michael Silver explains. READ

It was a call you simply never see at this level of the game. Facing a fourth-and-3 from their own 18 and nursing a 28-26 lead over the Seahawks with 2:55 to play, Fisher called for a fake punt. Hekker and Cunningham did their jobs, teaming up for an 18-yard gain that ensured the upset of the defending champs.

As we theorized in our postgame write-up, Fisher's decision was all about keeping the ball out of the hands of Russell Wilson, who had led the Seahawks on three straight, long touchdown drives until that point and had become the first player in NFL history to throw for 300 yards and run for 100 yards in the same game.

"They had such momentum," Fisher explained on his drive home from the Dome, per NFL Media columnist Michael Silver. "And look -- Russell Wilson's really good. We had them down, and he took it over. So no, we wanted no part of him at the end."

Fisher said he had decided before the drive started that the Rams were going to try the fake if the situation presented itself. The play was cooked up during the week when special teams coach John Fassel -- whom we assume slept very well last night -- saw that the Seahawks had just one blocker on the outside against the gunner.

The plan was set. The execution would decide the game.

"Make the catch or I'm probably going to be done; this might be my last play in the NFL if I don't make this catch," Cunningham said. "Either they're going to cut me or my teammates are going to kill me."

Cunningham made the catch, and the Rams had pulled off the gutsiest play of the NFL season.

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