Redskins cornerback Shawn Springs exited the game in the first quarter because of a fractured shoulder blade, and the Rams' passing attack cranked it up even more against an undermanned secondary that was paying extra attention to wide receiver Torry Holt.
That allowed quarterback Marc Bulger to connect with wide receiver Isaac Bruce nine times for 148 yards and a touchdown in the Rams' 37-31 overtime victory.
Said Bulger: "They were doubling Torry. They do so many different things on defense. One of their coverages is to play two-man, where they lock a guy on Torry and give help over the top. They bring (Sean) Taylor down for run support and they play one-on-one with the Z-receiver usually. I think we have the luxury of having two receivers and that's why I kept throwing it to him."
As for the fact that Bruce turned 34 in November, coach Scott Linehan said, "Unbelievable ... he defies Father Time. There are a lot of guys that don't have it anymore ... (but) it's phenomenal how he's able to get so open at his age. That's why he's a Hall of Famer, in my opinion."
Said running back Steven Jackson, "Isaac is a guy that's consistently shown up year in and year out. I don't think his play has gone down. To see defenses have to focus on him late in his career like this, it's something I want to strive for."
Bruce's 148-yard day put him over 1,000 yards (1,032) for the season. For the last few seasons, Bruce's age has been the subject of national comments and doubts despite the fact that Colts wide receiver Marvin Harrison is three months older and Terrell Owens is just a year younger.
"I think it just fuels the fire when people say that," Bulger said. "Maybe that's the perception around the league, that you can play one-on-one against him. I know Torry has been getting a lot of double coverage and Isaac hasn't' been getting a lot of chances to get one-on-one and I think after today they'll be helping out on him."
Bruce now has 883 career catches and 13,310 yards, totals that rank seventh on the NFL all-time list.