Our nightmare is realized.
The Los Angeles Rams are Super Bowl champions after going “all-in” to win. And for the third game in a row, the Rams won by exactly 3 points. It was 30-27 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the Divisional Round, 20-17 over the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship, and in the ultimate game it was 23-20 over the determined Cincinnati Bengals at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, CA.
After racing out to a 13-3 lead over the Cincinnati Bengals, Joe Burrow and Joe Mixon (yes, you read that right) both threw touchdown passes to Tee Higgins as Cincinnati rattled off 17 unanswered points. Unfortunately for Cincy, their scoring ceased in the 3rd quarter and they could not fend off the Rams much longer, even with Odell Beckham Jr out for the entire 2nd half with a knee injury.
Matthew Stafford and Super Bowl MVP Cooper Kupp embarked on the game-winning 15-play, 79-yard drive which saw Kupp convert a 4th and 1 from his own 30, and make 4 catches for 37 yards and the go-ahead touchdown. The officials, who’d been quiet almost all game (and missed an obvious face mask/OPI on Tee Higgins’ second TD), controversially missed a Rams false start and then did flag Logan Wilson for holding.
Logan Wilson was in great position refs almost never call this plus with the way they let them play the entire game you can’t just switch up when the entire game is on the line on this one play u have to stay true pic.twitter.com/tAljNpDgvJ— Lil ️ey ️ey (@CP3PO2) February 14, 2022
Eli Apple, who’s getting roasted on Twitter by actual NFL players at the moment, held the shit out of Kupp a couple of plays later and then got beaten for the score on the ensuing snap.
Joe Burrow, who was sacked a ridiculous six times in the 2nd half, led Cincinnati into Rams territory with under a minute to go and a couple of timeouts. On 2nd and 1 they took a deep shot to nowhere. A 3rd and 1 run with Semaje Perine (????) was stuffed. Then Aaron Donald happened on 4th and 1, ball game.
As called on Rams radio: pic.twitter.com/KXImDRxhED— Timothy Burke (@bubbaprog) February 14, 2022
The Rams winning sucks, as the Seattle Seahawks are no longer the last NFC West team to win it all. But individually, it’s hard not to be happy for Andrew Whitworth and Eric Weddle in particular, as Whitworth is surely going to retire a winner and Weddle came out of retirement to play and win his first Super Bowl. Matthew Stafford also spent 12 years in the undeniable football sinkhole that is Detroit and was able to engineer another 4th quarter comeback en route to a Super Bowl title. He overcame two interceptions in the process and obviously the loss of Beckham.
Sean McVay has exorcised his demons after a dreadful offensive performance against the New England Patriots, and at 36 he’s the youngest head coach to win it all. I cannot knock two Super Bowl appearances, two more playoff appearances, three division titles, and a Super Bowl win because there are many coaches who have been coaching for way longer than five seasons who’ve not got that resume.
I do also want to shout out Kenneth Arthur, who’s managed Turf Show Times since 2020 but obviously was a part of the Field Gulls staff and was the managing editor who hired me in late 2016 before I took charge. He’s been a part of two Super Bowl wins, although we wish one wasn’t for Seattle’s rivals.
Congratulations to the Rams. We’re onto the offseason now.