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Los Angeles Rams among ESPN’s 10 most likely Super Bowl matchups

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While the loss in Week 4 might have Rams fans down, the future still looks bright.

Los Angeles Rams S Lamarcus Joyner walks off the field after Super Bowl LIII against the New England Patriots, Feb. 3, 2019.
Los Angeles Rams S Lamarcus Joyner walks off the field after Super Bowl LIII against the New England Patriots, Feb. 3, 2019.
Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Computers! Is there anything they can’t do?

Over at ESPN, the smart minds programmed the big ESPN computer in the middle of the computer room to simulate the season 20,000 times and spit out the most frequent combinations for Super Bowl LIV.

They put out their list of the top 10 combos (ESPN sub required), and the Los Angeles Rams are listed twice.

The Rams are first listed with the New England Patriots at #4:

FPI chance to happen: 7%

Number to know: New England’s secondary is on fire so far, and it would again prove a challenge for Rams quarterback Jared Goff. We know Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore is elite, but this season teammate Jason McCourty has held opponents to just a 36% completion percentage when he is the nearest defender to the target, the lowest among corners with 20 such plays, per Next Gen Stats.

What makes this is an interesting matchup: The rematch!

And they’re also listed with the Kansas City Chiefs at #6:

FPI chance to happen: 7%

Number to know: 105. That’s how many points these teams scored when they faced off against each other on Monday Night Football a year ago. There’d be fireworks again.

What makes this an interesting matchup: Two of the sport’s biggest young stars in different capacities going against each other: Mahomes and Sean McVay. Plus, another revenge game for Rams cornerback Marcus Peters against his old team.

I know there’s a bit of panic among Rams fans coming off of the Week 4 loss, but hopefully these reinspire some confidence for those needing it.

Now, what’s interesting is the rest of the top 10. ESPN’s FPI clearly like the New England Patriots and Dallas Cowboys the most. They made up their #1 ranking, but also the top of each conference. The dynamic at work in their top 10, though, is that they only have the Patriots and Chiefs as potential selections from the AFC. They have five teams from the NFC as potential Super Bowl entries: the Cowboys, the San Francisco 49ers (ew), the Rams, the New Orleans Saints and the Green Bay Packers. Here’s the top 10:

  1. Patriots vs. Cowboys
  2. Chiefs vs. Cowboys
  3. Patriots vs. 49ers
  4. Patriots vs. Rams
  5. Chiefs vs. 49ers
  6. Chiefs vs. Rams
  7. Patriots vs. Saints
  8. Chiefs vs. Saints
  9. Patriots vs. Packers
  10. Chiefs vs. Packers

So we can parse that to essentially make FPI’s power rankings as:

  1. Cowboys
  2. Patriots
  3. 49ers/Chiefs (tie)
  4. Rams
  5. Saints
  6. Packers

The Rams will a get a chance to disrupt that Top 3 when we host the Niners in Week 6.