Super Bowl LVI takes place on Sunday 13 February 2022 as the Cincinnati Bengals face the Los Angeles Rams
For a second year in a row the NFC Champions will host the Super Bowl. Prior to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers a year ago it had never happened previously.
How the Rams made it to Super Bowl LVI
The #4 seed LA Rams comfortably saw off NFC West rivals Arizona Cardinals 34-11 in the wild card round before they won 30-27 at Tampa Bay in the Divisional round. Sean McVay’s side had actually gone into the game as the sportsbooks’ underdogs, although we correctly picked them to progress.
Los Angeles then saw off NFC West rivals San Francisco 49ers 20-17 in the NFC Championship game.
#4 Bengals winning on the road
Cincinnati’s route to the third Super Bowl wasn’t so straightforward. They narrowly hung onto a 26-19 wild card victory at home to the Las Vegas Raiders before going to the #1 seed Tennessee Titans, pulling off a 19-16 victory, as we correctly picked.
However, we weren’t expecting them to show up to Kansas City and see off the Chiefs 27-24 in overtime in the AFC Championship as they did. This was one of just two picks we have incorrectly selected from the 12 games leading up to the Super Bowl.
The sportsbooks have made the LA Rams 4-point favourites ahead of Sunday’s big one. A star studded defence may be the difference maker here as both teams have explosive offences.
Matthew Stafford will be playing in his first Super Bowl following his trade from the Detroit Lions in the off-season. The 34-year-old has the likes of Cooper Kupp, Odell Beckham Jr., and Robert Woods at his disposal, whilst Cam Akers has seen a lot of carries in the post-season.
Can Joe Burrow win against the odds?
Joe Cool was excellent in his team’s come-from-behind upset win at the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship, staying composed in the pocket completing 23/38 for 250 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Although the second-year quarterback received a lot of the praise for the 19-16 victory over the Tennessee Titans in the previous round, the defence was greatly overlooked, picking off Ryan Tannehill three times – which was really the key.
In that game, Burrow took nine sacks. If the Titans can produce that, just think what the Rams’ front seven with the likes of Aaron Donald, Von Miller and Leonard Floyd can do?
Remember last year’s Super Bowl? Patrick Mahomes never got any time in the pocket as the Buccaneers’ front seven got into the backfield on down after down.
Unfortunately for Joe Burrow, we expect similar to happen on Sunday. The Bengals’ offensive line have not been able to protect their quarterback well at all in the post-season so far and that’s before they face the top defensive line in the NFL.
Pick: LA Rams -4