Veteran’s Day Brings a Special Meaning for Rams Captain


Getty Rob Havenstein (79) huddles with the Rams offense on October 30, 2022.

Veteran’s Day 2022 came with a special meaning for one member of the Los Angeles Rams on Friday, November 11.

The holiday is much more than just a day that honors past military service members for Rams offensive captain Rob Havenstein. The holiday also resonates for this reason: He’s earned a nomination for the 2022 NFL Salute to Service Award by USAA.

Havenstein, already lauded for his leadership as a Rams captain, became a recipient of the nomination on November 6. But he spoke with Heavy on Rams Friday about the significance of the award as well his thoughts on the state of the Rams’ offensive line with a key member set to return.

‘Big Hav’ Reacts to Nod

Havenstein embraces the fact that he’s the one representing the Rams for the award.

“It’s a great honor to be involved with anything related to our military,” Havenstein told Heavy. “You know, those guys are the most selfless people in the world.”

Havenstein, or “Big Hav” to his teammates, says that he’s gotten to know military personnel in his community and also takes part in a hunting club where it’s in collaboration with the Wounded Warriors Project called Warrior Rising. Havenstein said hearing stories from U.S. military veterans really opened his eyes.

“Just hearing guys’ stories just puts life into perspective of what’s really important,” Havenstein said. “Plus what these people do for the rest of us. So it’s a great honor.”

Havenstein doesn’t have family members who served, however he does have friends of family members who did put on the uniform. Havenstein receiving the award during the week of Veteran’s Day added to the significance of receiving the honor.

“It’s obviously huge. Like I said, hearing the stories from some of the experiences people had — good, bad or different — there’s obviously horrible things that go on in war, but you hear the brotherhood in some of those stories,” Havenstein said. “A lot of life reflections you hear from people get you to think about your own life and how you think about things when things are bad. We’re out here playing and some people say football is like war when in reality, it’s not at all. It’s not life or death out here. It’s truly a humbling thing to meet some of these people out here.”

Rams Expected to Receive Boost From Fellow OL

Havenstein has played on an offensive line that has dealt with a myriad of injuries throughout the season.

However, the Rams are expected to welcome back Coleman Shelton into the lineup for the first time since the Week 4 San Francisco 49ers game, with head coach Sean McVay confirming Shelton will be activated and ready to go.

“Coleman is a guy we’re obviously excited to have back. He’s just a naturally grinder of a guy. He got the injury, an unfortunate injury, and tried to play. We realized him playing wasn’t in the cards. He gave it a shot anyway,”Havenstein said. “But he’s a guy you see him out there working and itching to get back out there with the boys. He’s back now and we’re excited about it.”

Having Shelton back is impactful from both and strength and communication standpoint as noted by “Big Hav.”

“He’s got a great presence, he’s a great communicator and he plays hard every single play. He’s a guy you definitely want on the line,” Havenstein said.

Hanvenstein annually supports the military through his “My Cause My Cleats” initiative the NFL does every December.

Per a USAA release, Havenstein even donated his suite to the families of the fallen service members honored through the USAA’s partnership with the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS).

Fans can vote for Havenstein to win the award by visiting this link from now until November 30

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