Super Bowl Preview: Joe Burrow Leads Bengals to Inglewood in Championship against Rams
Here it is everybody, the big game, the game we’ve all been waiting for. The two best teams in the NFL will finally clash tomorrow, fighting for the title of football champions. Representing the AFC are the surprising, young Bengals. Backed behind 2nd year QB Joe Burrow, they’ve shocked everybody this year by making a Super Bowl run when almost everyone ruled them out. Representing the NFC are the all-in Rams. They’ve sacrificed almost everything for their Super Bowl Run, trading away draft picks for vets, but the strategy has worked. Led by veteran QB Matthew Stafford and talented WR Cooper Kupp, they will showcase an explosive offense in this year’s Super Bowl. Both these teams have persevered, fought through tough matchups, came up clutch, and proved why they are the top dogs of their respective conferences. Who wants it more? Who will fight more? Who will dig deeper? Who will prevail as world champions? Let’s break it down.
Wow, who would’ve thought the Cincinnati Bengals would be in the Super Bowl this year? Joe Burrow and Ja’Marr Chase have defied the odds this season, and the defense has held up through the end of the season. Joe Burrow has been magic, and comes into the Super Bowl with 34 TDs on the year. Despite being sacked a whopping 9 times, he was somehow able to eek the Bengals past the №1 seed Tennessee Titans back in the Divisional Round. He’s possessed at least a 100 QB rating in 5 of his last 7 games, a 70% completion percentage in 3 of his last 4, and thrown at least 2 TDs in 4 of his last 5. The 2nd year QB is performing at an elite level, and is displaying that he is perfectly capable of winning his first Super Bowl Ring tomorrow night. Now, part of Burrow’s success is due to his emergent WR Ja’Marr Chase. Chase has had an unbelievable rookie campaign, accumulating 1,455 yards on the season in addition to 13 TDs. The Offensive Rookie of the Year has racked up 100+ yards in 2 of his last 3 contests, and his presence on the field has allowed Burrow to flourish the way he has this season. The Bengals, backed behind their superstar duo, will need to win the skirmishes in the air in order to raise the Lombardi trophy tomorrow. Even if Chase is locked up and double teamed like we saw in the AFC Championship, Burrow will have to get the ball to his other receivers and take what the defense gives him. Don’t force it to Chase, hit WR Tee Higgins in the slant, or check it down to RB Joe Mixon. The Rams D is third in the league in sacks this year, so Burrow has to be ready to evacuate the ball out of the pocket efficiently and effectively. The Bengals defense in the playoffs has been very solid, averaging 19.6 points allowed per game, including holding the explosive Chiefs to just 24 points including OT. Their 5th ranked rushing defense has to stop Rams’ RB Cam Akers from powering for 1st-down runs and hold Stafford off enough to give their offense the chance to break away.
Los Angeles Rams
Matthew Stafford, what a year he’s had. After being stuck in depressing and terrible Detroit for 12 years, the first year he gets inputted into a good system, he leads them to the Super Bowl. The QB is 114 yards shy of a 5,000 yard season this year, and has amassed 41 touchdowns through the air. He’s tossed at least 2 TDs in 5 consecutive games, and at least 300 yards in the Divisional Round and Conference Championship games. His experience and skill has helped the Rams in being the dominant force they have been this year. Stafford’s success also was aided by a sensational wideout of his own, Cooper Kupp. Kupp led the league in receiving yards this season, with 1,947. The Offensive Player of the Year is a literal cheat code, averaging over 100 yards per game on the season, playoffs included. He’s got at least 1 receiving TD in 5 consecutive contests, and exploded in the Divisional Round against Tampa Bay for 183 receiving yards on 9 catches. Don’t forget the resurgent Odell Beckham Jr., however. He’s been reinvigorated since being traded to the Rams, catching at 75% of his catches in the past 3 games, and exploded for a 113 yard game in the NFC Championship game. The run game has been a bit lacking, with starting RB Cam Akers missing most of the season, and Sony Michel picking up the slack. Akers somehow has come back from his season-ending injury, and will be available for the Super Bowl. The Los Angeles Defense is star-studded. Their defensive line, led by Aaron Donald, racks up sacks like DaBaby racks cash, and Jalen Ramsey kills quarterbacks in the secondary. Their run defense, just like Cincinnati’s, is very stout and should stop Joe Mixon on the ground. If the defense can slow down the magical Joe Burrow, stop him from evading out of the pocket, and decrease his efficiency, then they should win tomorrow’s showdown.
Currently, the Rams are 4-point favorites, and the O/U stands at 50. Joe Burrow should keep it competitive with Matthew Stafford and while the Bengals O-line will be rocked tomorrow, Burrow has worked his magic and has kept Cincinnati competitive even when under intense pressure. The Bengals defense should continue their success, heck if you can hold the Chiefs to an ordinary 24 points, you could hold back anybody. Look for guys not named Joe Burrow or Ja’Marr Chase to show up tomorrow, as the Bengals will use a team effort in their victory plan. Expect the Bengals to cover the spread, and possibly come out as Super Bowl Champions. For the O/U, I’d say it’s inflated enough to go under. While Burrow and Stafford are both highly competent QBs and can manipulate secondaries, don’t take the defenses for either teams for granted. The Los Angeles pass rush is deadly, ranks 9th in expected points contributed by defense, and 9th in TO%. The Bengals have hit the under in every postseason game this year, and don’t expect that trend to change. Take the under.
And that’s it, my write-up on this year’s Super Bowl. It should be a fun and exciting one, one between two great teams. Personally, I’m rooting for the Bengals to complete the Cinderella story and win it all. No matter who you are rooting for, we can all agree tomorrow will be a sports classic, and will host a contest that will entertain all sports fans. Everybody, have a good night, and dream about Burrow bombs, Cooper Kupp’s amazing catches, and…Snoop Dogg.
This article is under Fair Use:
Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act in 1976; Allowance is made for “Fair Use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statue that might otherwise be infringing Non-profit, educational, or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use.
I do not own the pictures or graphics used in my articles. All credits go to their rightful owner. No copyright infringement intended.