I can’t play again: Rams key player make shocking retirement

Where are they now? Pat Terrell, a former Rams safety and now an airline pilot,
It never hurts for a club to add a safety who is willing to tackle, make a few interceptions, and assist win a national championship.

The Rams accomplished just that in the second round of the 1990 NFL Draft, selecting Pat Terrell, who, after contributing to Notre Dame’s perfect 12-0 record and championship as a junior, produced 44 tackles and five picks during his senior season.
“I was extremely excited,” Terrell remarked. “Frank Stams is a good buddy of mine from Notre Dame, and he was drafted the prior year, so it was nice to join a squad with some familiarity.

“And come on, (after being reared in St. Petersburg, FL), I lived in South Bend for four years. So, to get drafted by the Los Angeles Rams, I mean, twist my arms. It was one of the teams on my radar, and I had a lot of respect for the organization. “I was completely thrilled.”

Stams wasn’t the only familiar face Terrell saw on his vacation to Southern California.

“During the Combine, I had many interviews with the Rams, who had John Robinson as head coach and Fritz Shurmer as defensive coordinator. “So I knew there was some interest,” Terrell explained. “And John Robinson was the (former) USC coach.”

“He said I reminded him of Ronnie Lott a little and that he studied me a lot in scouting videos, particularly in the rivalries versus USC and Notre Dame. So it was fantastic because I felt like those guys knew who I was and what kind of player I was. I also realized what kind of person I was.”


Terrell and the Rams struggled as rookies, finishing 5-11 after going 11-5 the previous year. He was also up against the San Francisco 49ers, the defending Super Bowl XXIV champions.


Coincidentally, his first NFL start and interception occurred in the same game, an upset victory over San Francisco in Week 12.


“Joe Montana was somewhat of the Magic Johnson of football at the time. “He was on top of his game,” Terrell stated. “And, you know, Patrick Mahomes wasn’t the first to develop the look to the left and pass to the right. Montana had been doing this for years. And, to be honest, Joe tried to look me off, which he did effectively, but I broke the wrong way. So when he returned, I happened to be present and caught the interception. I was obviously quite excited.

“And I will never forget. After the game, Joe approached me, and I was impressed that he recognized my name. He said, “Hi, Pat.” Allow me to ask you a question. “What did you see on that pick?” I giggled and added, ‘Aww, Joe, I’ve been studying you for years.’ And he says, ‘Because you’re a Notre Dame grad, I’ll give you that one. But don’t ever expect to pick me off again. “And we both kind of laughed.”
Terrell was confident when he entered the starting lineup during his second season. Not only because of the experience he received from his first year in L.A., but also because of what he was able to go through.

“The speed was definitely rapid, but the most noticeable difference was undoubtedly the quarterbacks’ performance. What I believed was covered in college was completely open in the NFL. I didn’t feel lost; I’d always been a confident and physical player. And therefore I believed the time was ideal for me,” Terrell explained.


“I got a lot of playing time my rookie year, so I believed it was a natural step to be a starter my second year there. Michael Stewart was a fun mentor to have. He knew the game well and had a knack for keeping things simple, which I admired. To be back there, playing with Michael Stewart


To be continue….

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *