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Rams star Aaron Donald hints at 2022 return: 'Why not run it back?'

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Los Angeles Rams defensive lineman Aaron Donald holds up the Lombardi Trophy during the team's Super Bowl parade in front of the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Wednesday in Los Angeles. Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/dc75cfbd3f403d514ce3df5237213117/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
Los Angeles Rams defensive lineman Aaron Donald holds up the Lombardi Trophy during the team's Super Bowl parade in front of the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Wednesday in Los Angeles. Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 16 (UPI) -- Los Angeles Rams superstar defensive lineman Aaron Donald hinted at a possible return for the 2022 season during the team's Super Bowl parade Wednesday.

On a makeshift stage positioned outside of the L.A. Coliseum, Rams head coach Sean McVay gestured to Donald just as the three-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year was concluding a short speech directed at the thousands in attendance.

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"Sean McVay just tapped me on the shoulder," emcee J.B. Long said to Donald during the event. "He wanted to know if you were interested in running it back."

McVay then grabbed the microphone and started a not-so-subtle chant imploring Donald to "run it back" for the 2022 season.

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"We built a super team, we can bring the super team back," Donald responded, igniting a loud roar from McVay and the fans. "Why not run it back? We can be world champs again."

The moment between McVay and Donald appeared to quell concerns that the duo would suddenly retire after their 23-20 win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Super Bowl LVI on Sunday night. Both McVay and Donald recently left that possibility of retirement open.

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McVay, who spoke about wanting to maintain a healthier work-life balance in the days leading up the Super Bowl, responded to a question Monday about returning in 2022 with, "We'll see."

Before Sunday's championship game, former NFL safety and current NBC analyst Rodney Harrison said there was a "strong possibility" that Donald retires if the Rams win the Super Bowl, even though he has three years left on his contract.

Donald was noncommittal about his future Sunday night, but his comments on stage Wednesday seemed to reveal a desire to return next season. McVay didn't address his future during the parade, but his actions spoke volumes to Rams COO Kevin Demoff.

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"You saw Sean on stage today," Demoff said. "He's ready to go defend our title."

On Wednesday, Rams players, coaches and front-office officials filled four double-decker buses and cruised around a 1.1-mile parade route that began at the Shrine Auditorium and wrapped around Figueroa Street before reaching the Coliseum.

The Rams are the third major Los Angeles sports team to win a championship in the past 16 months, but MLB's Los Angeles Dodgers and the NBA's L.A. Lakers were denied a parade due to COVID-19 restrictions.

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Moments from Super Bowl LVI

Los Angeles Rams players, coaches, and staff celebrate after defeating the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20 in Super Bowl LVI at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday. Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo

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