Some teams are bound to be better than others, but all NFL fans can enjoy the spectacle of Super Bowl LVI.
The “when is super bowl 2022” is a question that many people have. The Super Bowl LVI will be held on February 3rd, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia.
9:50 p.m. Eastern
Now, let’s go on. When the 2021 season started, nearly no one anticipated Super Bowl LVI to have a showdown like this.
After winning an NFL-worst two games in 2019 and then just four games last season, the Cincinnati Bengals were 125-1 preseason long odds to reach the Super Bowl. They’ve gone from having the poorest record in the league to winning the Super Bowl in the shortest amount of time. They’ll play the Los Angeles Rams, who will play the Super Bowl for the second time in a row at their home stadium. (At Raymond James Stadium, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers won Super Bowl LV last season.)
Here’s what we’ve got to start the Super Bowl conversation: Seth Walder crunches the numbers to give you some key stats to know; Kevin Seifert looks at each team and how they can win the Super Bowl; Kevin Seifert looks at each team and how they can win the Super Bowl; Kevin Seifert looks at each team and how they can win the Super Bowl; Kevin Seifert looks at each Matt Bowen delves into the game plan with a vital matchup and an X factor; Dan Graziano addresses important questions about the season’s last game; Jason Reid delves into what’s at stake for each quarterback’s legacy; and, finally, our experts provide early, Predictions based on gut reactions. Let’s get started.
Game lines are provided by Caesars Sportsbook. ESPN’s Football Power Index is used to make predictions (FPI).
Rams vs. Bengals | Key numbers vs. X-factors | Big questions Quarterbacks | First-round choices
When: Sunday, February 13 at 6:30 p.m. ET on NBC Inglewood, California’s SoFi Stadium Rams -3.5 (over/under 50) is the opening line. Rams (66.4 percent) by 5.6 points, according to the FPI.
The focus for the next two weeks will be on quarterback play, and with good reason. Joe Burrow of the Bengals has been playing out of his mind in the playoffs, while Matthew Stafford of the Rams has supplied precisely what his new team needed. However, Rams defensive lineman Aaron Donald, who helped close out the NFC Championship Game, may be the Rams’ antidote to Burrow’s strong performance. Seifert’s
Kevin Seifert’s first assessment of the clash
12-5 in the regular season | No. 4 seed in the NFC
Reason for optimism: In the fourth quarter of a game, no Matthew Stafford team can be written out. His inventiveness will be a significant benefit, given how tight the NFL playoff games have been over the last two weeks. Stafford has the fifth-most fourth-quarter comebacks in NFL history, with 34 in the regular season, and he has won consecutive late triumphs in each of the last two weeks. Although Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow is currently playing at a better level, it’s difficult to argue against Stafford and receivers Cooper Kupp and Odell Beckham Jr. being on the field with the game on the line.
Reason for alarm: Given that he has already guided the Rams to two Super Bowl victories, this may seem strange, but coach Sean McVay can get in his own way at times. His careless use of timeouts has been extensively documented. His playcalling might be too analytical at times. In Super Bowl LIII, he even stated that he didn’t adapt to how the New England Patriots were playing defense against them. McVay has been both the driving force behind the Rams’ success and one of the reasons they have failed to win a title during his tenure. Is he capable of taking the last step?
How the Rams win: Against the Bengals’ offensive line, the Rams’ front four, particularly defensive tackle Aaron Donald and edge rusher Von Miller, are a tremendous mismatch. We’ve seen how Burrow has held his own against pass rushers on their way home, particularly against the Titans in the divisional round, but the Rams’ rush will be the most aggressive and skilled he’s faced. Interior pass rushes have won several Super Bowls by forcing quarterbacks out of their comfort zones.
10-7 in the regular season | No. 4 seed in the AFC
Reason for optimism: Things’s impossible to overthink it. Joe Burrow, the first No. 1 overall selection to lead his club to the Super Bowl in his first two seasons, was the Bengals’ prize for having the worst record in 2019. He’s held up well despite an offensive line that can’t keep him clean. On Sunday, he completed seven of 12 throws under duress and scrambled for three third down conversions, including two of third-and-6 or higher. Burrow just switched to Tee Higgins as the Chiefs found ways to cover top receiver Ja’Marr Chase (six catches, 103 yards). In the NCAA basketball tournament, Burrow is playing like a hot point guard, powering a squad with some otherwise disqualifying flaws.
Reason for alarm: After falling behind the Chiefs 21-3 on Sunday, the Bengals made a huge defensive adjustment, most notably taking away receiver Tyreek Hill and passing outside the numbers in general. In the first half, Chiefs receiver Patrick Mahomes completed all 11 of his attempts for 127 yards and three touchdowns. He missed seven of his eight such throws after halftime. It’s commendable that defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo was able to make that adjustment, but no one should expect the Bengals to be able to withstand a comparable body hit in the Super Bowl. During the regular season, the Bengals’ defense had several dubious moments and placed 24th in opposition Total QBR. Do you have faith in them in the face of Matthew Stafford?
How the Bengals will win: They’ll ride the wave that other previous Super Bowl champions have found. The top regular-season club does not always win the Super Bowl. In the playoffs, it’s the team that plays the best and with the greatest confidence. The chasm may be rather large at times. The Bengals’ organization as a whole feels they can win, which is more than half the fight.
The most important statistics about Seth Walder to be aware of
The Rams have the upper hand in the trenches. Los Angeles led the league in pass block win rate, pass rush win rate, and run stop win rate through Sunday. Yes, No. 1 in each of the three categories. Along the two lines, offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth and defensive tackle Aaron Donald lead the way, but it’s a team effort. While receiver Cooper Kupp gets all of the attention (and rightly so), don’t overlook the linemen who have propelled the Rams to the Super Bowl.
• First look at the Rams-Bengals game on Feb. 13 at 6:30 p.m. ET (NBC) • Complete bracket, schedule, and format information » • Check out more playoff coverage here »
The Bengals will be in terrific condition if Joe Burrow can get the ball out of his hands. According to NFL Next Gen Stats, they had the second-highest predicted points gained per play on plays where a pass is thrown entering Sunday, thanks to Burrow leading the league in completion percentage above expectation (plus-6%). But there’s a major if here: Cincinnati was 30th in pass block win rate into the AFC Championship Game, while Burrow was fourth in the NFL with a sack rate of 9%.
Matt Bowen delves further into the contest.
Cooper Kupp of the Rams vs. Mike Hilton of the Bengals is a key matchup.
In man coverage, it’ll be Hilton vs. Kupp in the slot for the Bengals. We know Kupp has the route-running skills to win one-on-one battles, and L.A. coach Sean McVay will employ reduced formations and bunch sets to provide Kupp with unrestricted access off the ball.
Bengals’ Jessie Bates III, X factor
In the playoffs, Bates is playing his finest football of the year. The Bengals’ safety can have an influence on the game at several levels of the field because to his long range, ball skills, and playmaking abilities. In the playoffs, Bates had an interception and four passes defended.
Dan Graziano responds to tough questions.
Will Sean McVay’s offense falter once again in the Super Bowl?
Before turning up for Super Bowl LIII and losing 13-3 to Bill Belichick, Tom Brady, and the New England Patriots, McVay’s 2018 Rams averaged 32.9 points per game in the regular season and 28 in two playoff games. It was a significant setback for McVay, who said in the weeks thereafter that if he had another opportunity, he would do things differently. Not only does he have that opportunity, but he has it with quarterback Matthew Stafford. Stafford was acquired by the Rams a year ago after McVay believed he’d gone as far as he could with Jared Goff as quarterback. Stafford, according to McVay, raises the Rams’ quarterback ceiling and allows the offense to accomplish more with him than it could with Goff.
With the Rams’ triumph over the Niners in the NFC Championship Game on Sunday, Stafford has now gone as far with the team as Goff went three years ago. Now, he and McVay will have to prove they can light it up like the Rams are meant to on the greatest stage. Cooper Kupp, a wide receiver, is eager to finish the season on a high note. Odell Beckham Jr. seems to be in better shape in Los Angeles. Cam Akers, who had his Achilles tendon ruptured six months ago, looks excellent at running back. The puzzle parts are all in place. Can the Rams become just the second club in Super Bowl history (and the second in the last two years) to win the game at home?
Will the Bengals be able to keep Joe Burrow safe, and does it really matter?
Burrow is the 55th quarterback in NFL history to be sacked 50 times or more in a single season. None of the previous 54 teams has ever made it to the Super Bowl. He had 51 sacks during the regular season, two in the wild-card round against the Raiders, an unbelievable nine in the divisional round against the Titans, and just one in the AFC Championship Game against the Chiefs. The Bengals’ offensive line is a weak place, and Burrow’s ability to evade pressure was a significant reason he didn’t get sacked more on Sunday.
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The Rams’ defensive front is powerful, and it’s one of the reasons they’ve progressed this far. This is going to be another difficult test, particularly as Aaron Donald is compressing the pocket from the inside. It hasn’t cost the Bengals yet. You have to assume that if you can win a playoff game despite surrendering nine sacks, you can overcome just about anything. Burrow, on the other hand, would undoubtedly welcome a somewhat cleaner pocket one of these days. It’s a good idea to start on Super Bowl Sunday.
What’s at risk for each quarterback, according to Jason Reid
Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford
The Rams acquired Stafford from the Detroit Lions in the summer, believing he was the quarterback they needed to reach the Super Bowl. Stafford came through for the Rams, leading them to the NFC crown. Now he’ll aim to complete the task on the Rams’ home turf. Stafford, the No. 1 overall choice in the 2009 draft, has been tainted in the eyes of some fans due to Detroit’s lack of success throughout his extended stay there. Stafford would finally quiet many of his naysayers if the Rams won one more game at SoFi Stadium.
Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow
Burrow rose to superstar status in just his second season with a slew of memorable performances, the most notable of which being Sunday’s AFC Championship Game victory against Patrick Mahomes on the road. Mahomes, Josh Allen, Justin Herbert, and Lamar Jackson are among the AFC’s many talented young quarterbacks. However, if the Bengals, who finished last in the AFC North during Burrow’s injury-shortened rookie season, win one more game, Burrow will undoubtedly be ahead of everyone except Mahomes. Despite the fact that he is still young in his NFL career, Burrow already boasts a Heisman Trophy and a national championship in college football. A Super Bowl victory would be a terrific addition to the list.
Predictions based on gut reactions
Bengals reporter Ben Baby: Bengals. Throughout the season, Cincinnati’s players and coaches often said that this year’s squad was unique. On paper, the Rams seem to be a formidable opponent. However, it may be time to trust what the Bengals have been telling us.
NFL analyst Matt Bowen: Rams. Given Stafford’s pass-game scheme, I favor L.A. here. Against zone coverage, it’ll be schemed throws to create open spaces, as well as man matchups with Kupp.
Mike Clay, NFL analyst: Rams. McVay has been in this situation before and has come up just short. With a great quarterback at the helm, he’ll pull it off this time.
Bengals, according to Jeremy Fowler, a national NFL journalist. In the playoffs, I picked against them three times, and they’ve proven me wrong each time. That is no longer the case. All non-believers were converted as a result of what they accomplished in Kansas City.
Bengals, according to Dan Graziano, a national NFL journalist. I’m not going to get off the bandwagon now.
Bengals, according to NFL draft expert Jordan Reid. Burrow never lost a postseason game at LSU, and he hasn’t lost one in the NFL. The Bengals seem to be on their way to winning their first Super Bowl.
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Bengals, according to Kevin Seifert, a national NFL reporter. The team with the greatest quarterback wins, and this season, Burrow has been the best quarterback in the NFL playoffs.
Bengals, according to NFL expert Mike Tannenbaum. On paper, the Rams are the superior team, but Cincinnati is the club to beat this season.
Rams reporter Lindsey Thiry: Rams. The Rams were constructed to win a Super Bowl, and there’s no better time for them to accomplish it than behind Stafford and Donald, who is ready to get the job done after Los Angeles’ Super Bowl LIII effort fell short against the Patriots.
Rams, according to Seth Walder, an analytics writer. The pressure from Donald and Miller will overwhelm the Bengals’ offensive line, and Burrow’s proclivity for taking sacks will be especially expensive.
Rams, Seth Wickersham, NFL writer/reporter Donald, on the other hand, will play the game of his life.
Bengals, according to NFL expert Damien Woody. Joe Cool is unfazed by anything thanks to his offensive supporting cast.
Bengals, according to NFL commentator Field Yates. Burrow’s self-assurance has rubbed off on my selection. Cincinnati wins its first Super Bowl.
The Super Bowl LVI preview is a blog post that includes the who’s playing and what time they are playing. Reference: super bowl who is playing.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who is playing in Super Bowl LVI?
A: The New England Patriots are playing in Super Bowl LVI.
Who will host Super Bowl LVI?
A: The NFL will host the Super Bowl LVI in 2023.
Are the Bengals going to the Super Bowl 2022?
A: The Bengals are not going to the Super Bowl.
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