Your Los Angeles Rams are now Super Bowl champions. LA beat the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20 and have become the second team in NFL history to win in their own stadium. It took all over the Rams stars and newest additions to put together a game worthy of Hollywood, but in the end it all came together. Here is how it all went down.
The Rams got one first down on the first drive of the game, but a Stafford sack put them in a third-and-17. They could not convert and Johnny Hekker got his first action of the game. Cincinnati’s drive was much of the same, but ended on a failed fourth down attempt. The Rams quickly capitalized on Zac Taylor’s mistake. Seven plays later Stafford found Odell Beckham Jr. for a 17-yard touchdown.
It did not take long for Ja’Marr Chase to make his mark in the game. A 46-yard bomb from Burrow with Jalen Ramsey in coverage set up Cincinnati at the 11-yard line.
A red-zone defensive effort kept the Bengals from doing minimal damage. Evan McPherson’s field goal was good.
Score: Rams 7, Bengals 3
A third-and-11 turned into a 35-yard gain on a catch-and-run to OBJ to ignite the Rams offense. Stafford followed that up with a 25-yard pass to Darrell Henderson to set up LA at the 16-yard line. Two plays later, Kupp caught the second touchdown of the game. Hekker could not handle the snap on the extra point and it fell incomplete.
Cincinnati started out fast with gains of 11, 10, and 14. The drive came to a halt, but only for a moment. On a third-and-7, Burrow found Tee Higgins for a 14-yard gain to convert. A handoff turned trick-play at the six yard line featured a pass from Joe Mixon with Higgins as the recipient for the Bengals first touchdown of the game.
The next drive for Los Angeles ended in disaster. An apparent knee injury to OBJ kept him on the sidelines and a deep pass intended to Van Jefferson was intercepted by Jessie Bates III.
Though both teams had a chance to put up more points, neither could get anything going.
Score: Rams 13, Bengals 10
The first play of the third quarter was a big one. Burrow found Higgins for a 75-yard touchdown, but a questionable no-call was to blame.
The absence of Beckham was missed on the nest Rams drive. Skowronek let a very catchable ball tip off his hands and fall into the arms of the opposition.
Aaron Donald had just about enough of the Bengals offense. He had two sacks on the drive, and his second ended any chance of getting in to the end zone. Cincinnati settled with a field goal.
Kupp finally got back in the action with a 13-yard reception. He then played quarterback on a third-and-5 and nearly found Stafford for a first down. His pass was too high, but Gay’s kick was good.
The defensive came up with a stop when they needed it most. Ernest Jones got his first sack of the game and on third-and-11, Burrow’s pass fell incomplete. Stafford and company could not capitalize on the stop and a punt put Burrow on the 16-yard line.
A’Shawn Robinson dropped them back for two yards on his first sack of the game, then Von Miller followed that up with his own to set up third-and-22. A short punt set up Stafford at the 50 yard line.
Score: Rams 16, Bengals 20
LA’s defensive front continued to come in the clutch with yet another sack on Burrow—this time the quarterback went to the sideline limping. Stafford took over at the 35-yard line and his first play went for seven yards. A loss of a yard by Sony Michel led to a incomplete pass to Ben Skowronek and a punt.
The Bengal’s quarterback returned but it was obvious his injury was hindering his mobility as Taylor called three straight run plays in a row. Two first downs would lead to a third-and-9 attempt. Tyler Boyd dropped the pass that would have converted a first down, giving the ball back to the Rams at the 22-yard line.
A fourth-down conversion on fourth-and-1 got the cogs turning again for LA. With the game on the line, Stafford went to his favorite target. Kupp had gains of 22 and 8 to set up a eight yard run by Akers. A holding call by the defense in the red zone may have saved the Rams hope of a super Bowl victory—that and the other slew of penalties. The first attempt at the one yard line was a sneak by Stafford that went no where. The second was a touchdown to Kupp for the lead.
The first play of what could be the final drive went for 17 with Ramsey in coverage. On fourth-and-1 an incomplete pass ended the game.
Final Score: Rams 23, Bengals 20