LOS ANGELES – The National Football League’s ultimate prize, a Super Bowl championship, is far from easy to claim. Over the past half-century, NFL teams have celebrated their Super Bowl titles with one-of-a-kind diamond rings.
Rings have evolved with different patterns, colors and themes throughout the years. For many title-winning teams in the 21st century, rings have also proved symbolic of their decorated franchise history.
Prior to this year, the last ten Super Bowl winners have added a Lombardi trophy to their ring for every Super Bowl-winning season. For instance, the New England Patriots decorated a ring with six Lombardi trophies after their sixth Super Bowl win in 2019.
That tradition appears to be on hold, for now. And it appears to come at the expense of some St. Louis history.
Earlier this week, the Los Angeles Rams unveiled a ring commemorating their Super Bowl LVI victory. Coming off their second franchise title in February, the team released a ring design with only one Lombardi trophy.
The Rams picked up their first Lombardi trophy and Super Bowl title in 2000. It came during a 21-year stretch during which the franchise called St. Louis home from 1995 to 2015. As the St. Louis Rams, the franchise won Super Bowl XXXIV in 2000 and dropped Super Bowl XXXVI in 2002, a brief era many football fans fondly remember as the “Greatest Show On Turf” from their success at the then-called Edward Jones Dome.
In 2016, the Rams filed for relocation and moved the team to Los Angeles, where the franchise previously called home from 1946 to 1994. In Dec. 2021, nearly six years after the move, Rams owner Stan Kroenke and the NFL reached a $790 settlement with the city of St. Louis over relocating the franchise. Agencies are negotiating on how to distribute half a billion dollars from the settlement remains after attorney fees.
Less than two months after the settlement, the Rams won their first Super Bowl with the franchise based in Los Angeles. On Thursday evening, the Rams shared the design of their latest Super Bowl ring with the caption of “Inspired by LA. For LA.” via Twitter. The ring features just one Lombardi trophy above the Los Angeles Rams logo and between two palm trees.
According to TheRams.com, “The ring design was a collaborative effort between Rams players, team leadership, and Los Angeles-based jewelry house Jason of Beverly Hills.”
While the ring offers features that represent its latest title, such as .23 carats of diamonds to represent 23 points scored in Super Bowl LVI, it’s hard to find much of anything that symbolizes their previous title in St. Louis without a second Lombardi trophy.
The Rams have not publicly acknowledged any St. Louis ties with the Super Bowl ring in their publications or social media content, ultimately snubbing the history of when the franchise first became a Super Bowl champion in St. Louis.