LA Rams Kenny Young: That one’ll cost you plenty

(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

When the LA Rams defense emerged from the pile after stopping the Indianapolis Colts on first-down and goal to go from the LA Rams three-yard line, inside linebacker Kenny Young was visibly upset. The Rams had actually stuffed Colts running back Jonathan Taylor for a one-yard loss, another huge goal-line stand for the Rams defense.

But rather than be happy that the Rams had made a huge stop, Young was angry, animated, and passionate. In the heat of the battle, he pled whatever his case was to a nearby official, and in his loud and very active protest, his helmet came into contact with the brim of the official’s ball cap.

No interpretation was necessary. The act of contacting an NFL official is one of the most severe penalties on the books. It’s an instant ejection, a 15-yard penalty, and an automatic review by the NFL office for a possible fine. Young was ejected. Half the distance to the goal line was marched out. But today, the fine was announced, and it is a pretty hefty sum.

The result of the play reset the downs for the Colts, who struggled to score in the red zone against the Rams. But on this occasion, the Colts were able to convert on a third-down and goal from the LA Rams eight-yard line for a touchdown, their first touchdown of the afternoon. In fact, the Colts then converted a two-point play to get within three points of the LA Rams.

While the Rams did eventually win the game, Young lost the ability to process the game situation in real-time. Both Jalen Ramsey and Aaron Donald talked to him instantly on the football field, but it was too late. The damage was done. The ejection was made and the fine was set into motion.

There are times to be passionate. There are times to unleash that raw emotional energy and convert it into production on the football field. But it can never become a distraction to the player, or a mistake by the team. The LA Rams are simply not built to overcome shooting themselves in the foot. Not yet. Perhaps not ever.

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LA Rams inside linebacker Kenny Young made a bad decision on that play, and it was a decision that will cost him plenty. Fortunately, it did not cost the Rams a win.  But another emotional outburst again very well could.