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Brycen Hopkins will be Rams’ surprise difference maker in 2022

Tight end played a pivotal role in Super Bowl LVI win

NFL: Super Bowl LVI-Los Angeles Rams at Cincinnati Bengals Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Rams tight end Brycen Hopkins never expected to play such a vital role in Super Bowl LVI. At least that’s what he figured with Kendall Blanton earning the starting nod with Tyler Higbee ruled out for the Big Game. Once a shoulder injury ended Blanton’s evening in the first half, Hopkins stepped up and never looked back.

When scouring through the box score, the tight end’s stats on paper aren’t all that impressive. Brycen finished the game with four catches for 47 yards, three of them going for crucial first downs. Despite his underrated performance, fans have argued that LA wouldn’t have won the Lombardi without him.

Hopkins gave his all on the grandest stage when his number was called. It definitely isn’t a stretch to say the Rams would’ve lost the game without him. On a key 4th-and-1 play on what would become the game-winning drive, Brycen had a huge block for Kupp who ran for the first down. Without that block, the Bengals would’ve taken over on downs and run out the clock. It was a gutsy play call at the time but came with an even gutsier block since it had to be executed perfectly.

If healthy, Hopkins should have a larger role on offense in 2022 due to how he’s not a player defense coordinators are going to worry about when facing the Rams. All the focus will obviously be on Kupp and newcomer Allen Robinson so Brycen will slip right through the cracks.

At one point in the Super Bowl, Cincy’s fixation on Coop played into Hopkins’ hands. In this YouTube film study done by Jackson Krueger, from 1:50-2:35 in the video, Krueger analyzes how the tight end was able to get so open with Kupp lined up on that side of the field.

The rest of the video is worth checking out and should have Los Angeles fans salivating at his potential going into the upcoming campaign. McVay will carve out a role for Hopkins moving forward after his performance in the Super Bowl. It appears big things are to come for the young pass catcher. This fan on Twitter is banking on Brycen to become the Rams’ surprise difference maker for their title defense:

As for me, I’m going to jump on the Brycen Hopkins bandwagon for 2022 and more LA fans should follow suit. Now I’m not saying to immediately go buy his jersey off NFL Shop after reading this, but just don’t be surprised if he performs way above expectations this season.

If the “next man up” mantra Brycen adopted in the Big Game is an indication of things to come, sign me up because I can’t wait to see how this ride ends up.