Vintage Marshall: Recalling Faulk classics

Marshall Faulk went to Pro Bowls, won a Super Bowl, redefined his position, fueled the Greatest Show on Turf and wound up in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

His finest performance?

It's tough to find many more outrageous than Faulk's memorable effort for the St. Louis Rams during a 45-29 victory over the Atlanta Falcons in 2000.

Faulk finished the game with 208 yards rushing and 78 yards receiving, setting a career single-game high for combined rushing and receiving yards. He also scored twice on two-point conversions after the Rams lost kicker Jeff Wilkins to injury early in the game.

With Wilkins out, the Rams went for it on fourth-and-2 from the Atlanta 27-yard line with the score tied in the second quarter. Faulk ran up the middle for 16 yards, setting up the go-ahead touchdown.

The victory moved the Rams to 6-0 in their first season under Mike Martz, who called the running back's performance "incredible" and said at the time he couldn't find a weakness in Faulk's game.

This was back when the Rams felt as though they could score almost at will, and the evidence often suggested they were right. Facing fourth-and-15 in that 2000 game against the Falcons, Kurt Warner threw a 30-yard scoring strike to Az-Zahir Hakim. Who scores on fourth-and-15? Those old Rams teams did.

For pure impact, who could forget Faulk's 220-yard rushing performance against New Orleans with a playoff berth on the line in 2000? Faulk scored three touchdowns to give him 26 in 14 games that season.

"There's not a better player in this universe than Marshall Faulk," Martz told reporters after that game.

No one could argue.