Who Will Win Super Bowl LVI?
Providence College Investigates
Will Murphy ’23
Los Angeles Rams
The Los Angeles Rams are set to square off with the up-and-coming Cincinnati Bengals to decide a Super Bowl Champion, and the champion will be the Rams.
Both teams have put together impressive playoff runs, each winning three consecutive games to reach the Super Bowl. The Rams managed to build their team up into one of the top Super Bowl contenders prior to the season. They were able to re-up at the trade deadline, acquiring star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., who has been one of the Rams’ most dangerous weapons down the stretch. In addition to Odell, the Rams also have Cooper Kupp, who has been one of the most productive wide receivers in the league this year.
Despite his recent struggles with turnovers, Matt Stafford is one of the most talented quarterbacks in the league, with the ability to push the ball down the field in a hurry. It will be key for Stafford to take care of the ball and avoid any critical mistakes. If he can do that, the Rams’ dominant defense is more than capable of slowing down the prolific offense of the Bengals.
The Bengals’ quarterback, Joe Burrow, has had a breakout year in his sophomore campaign, but his offense’s glaring weakness is their offensive line. Unfortunately for them, the Rams’ biggest strength defensively is their ability to get to the quarterback. Aaron Donald is widely considered the best pass rusher in the league, and if the Bengals are unable to slow him down, Burrow could be in for a long game. Alongside Donald is Von Miller, another trade deadline acquisition, who is more than capable of getting to the quarterback and forcing turnovers. All-pro cornerback, Jalen Ramsey, is another player with a great impact on the game. Jamarr Chase, the Bengals’ rookie wide receiver, has emerged as a star this year, but will draw an incredibly tough matchup in all-pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey. Ramsey’s physicality is unlike anything Chase has faced so far this year, and it could pose a serious problem for the Bengals’ offense if Chase struggles.
Overall, the Rams have a high-octane offense that the Bengals’ defense will struggle to contain. In addition to their powerful offense, the defense will be able to pressure Joe Burrow consistently enough to throw him off his game. The Rams’ overall wealth of talent should prove to be too much for the Bengals to overcome and ensure that the Rams wake up Monday morning as Super Bowl Champions.
Luke Sweeney ’24
This Sunday, two blazing hot teams will meet for the Super Bowl at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, CA when the Cincinnati Bengals face off against the Los Angeles Rams. Unlike most years, both of these teams have had to play a wild card game at the beginning of their postseason campaigns. The Bengals have won six of their last seven games and are currently the high-powered offense that is being talked about around the league.
Led by the prophesied young Louisiana State University quarterback Joe Burrow, the Bengals have been shocking the world recently with big postseason wins against the Las Vegas Raiders, Tennessee Titans, and then the reigning American Football Conference (AFC) championship powerhouse, Kansas City Chiefs. Joe Burrow and the Bengals proved everyone wrong who thought that the Chiefs were an unstoppable force. In doing so, they have left their mark on the AFC as the new young team to beat for the coming years.
The National Football Conference (NFC) and AFC championship games two weeks ago left the world with their jaws open. The San Francisco 49ers and Chiefs, although coming up just short of a victory, showed that they have the tools on both offense and defense to win a Super Bowl. The weekend of championship football will go down in history as two of the most competitive and offensively explosive games ever played on the gridiron.
As for the Super Bowl between the Rams and Bengals, the Bengals are the younger and better of the two teams who will come up with the win. While the Rams have superstars such as Matt Stafford, Cooper Cupp, Aaron Donald and Jalen Ramsay, there is no group of players that can stop the well-rounded AFC powerhouse Bengals.
Joe Burrow and his number one target, Jamar Chase, have been unstoppable all season and the media is widely on their side. The deciding factor of this Super Bowl matchup is most likely going to be on the defensive side of the ball. It is no secret that both offenses have the ability to sling the ball down the field and hammer the run game when needed. That being said, whoever makes the biggest plays on defense will be the ones to hoist the Lombardi Trophy and bring it home to their respective cities.
The question, though, still remains: does a young Joe Burrow have the NFL-caliber skills and poise in the pocket to perform on a stage as big as the Super Bowl? We have all seen what he is capable of, but only time will tell.
Providence College Investigates
The Los Angeles Rams Will Win Super Bowl LIII
By Sullivan Burgess ’20
After defeating the New Orleans Saints and a controversial missed pass interference call late in the fourth quarter, the Los Angeles Rams will play the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LIII. This will be the first Rams appearance in the Super Bowl since 2002, when they also played the Patriots.
While the New England Patriots have been on a hot streak since entering the playoffs, the game will ultimately go to the Rams.
Two key aspects that will help lead the Rams to victory are their consistent offense and defense—aspects that 33-year-old head coach Sean McVay knows how to control within any game.
On the offensive side, third-year quarterback Jared Goff is looking to make a name for himself after being drafted first overall in the 2016 NFL Draft.
This season Goff has career-high stats throughout all categories, with 32 touchdowns, a 64.9 percnt completion rate, and a total of 4,688 passing yards, putting him fourth for highest passing yards during the regular season behind Ben Roethlisberger, Patrick Mahomes, and Matt Ryan.
Rams running back Todd Gurley has also been having a good season with 1,251 yards, putting him third in rushing yards. He proves to be the difference-maker when he is healthy and on the field for the Rams. For example, in a game against the Denver Broncos, Gurley completed the game with 208 yards, two touchdowns, and 28 carries which resulted in a win. Against the Chicago Bears, he only completed 11 carries and 28 yards with no touchdowns, which resulted in a loss for the Rams.
On the defensive side, starters such as Michael Brockers, Aaron Donald, Ndamukong Suh, and Marcus Peters must put on the games of their career in order to stop Tom Brady and his offensive weapons.
Aaron Donald has proven to be a defensive nightmare against any quarterback that steps in his way. He led the league at 20.5 sacks this season and is still hungry for anyone that comes in front of him.
Overall, the game will be tough, being against the veteran team that is the New England Patriots. Hopefully, the Rams will bring the consistent game play they have used throughout the season. They will be the dominant team in the NFC and will be holding the Lombardi Trophy in Atlanta at the end of the night.
Providence College Investigates
The Los Angeles Rams Will Win Super Bowl LIII
By Sam Scanlon ’19
As week one has concluded for the 2018-2019 NFL season, Super Bowl LIII predictions are a popular topic of discussion. My prediction: the Los Angeles Rams.
The defending NFC West Champions enter this season coming off an 11-5 record in their 2017 campaign, but have added several key players to this year’s roster that complement their current playmakers.
The Rams boast the reigning NFL Offensive Player of the Year in running back Todd Gurley. Gurley finished the season with 1,305 rushing yards while leading the NFL in yards from scrimmage with 2,093 and touchdowns at 19. His ability to find the end zone and create positive yardage gives the Rams the edge they will need to hoist the Lombardi Trophy come February.
Leading the offense, however, is 2016 first overall pick, Jared Goff. The 6’4” 222 pound quarterback had an excellent sophomore season as he threw 3,804 yards and 28 touchdowns. Goff is emerging as one of the NFL’s top quarterbacks, which is imperative for a Super Bowl contender. Look for Goff to exceed last year’s numbers and lead his team to Atlanta for Super Bowl LIII.
A huge reason Goff is expected to have another successful year is because of his speedy and talented receiving core. Brandin Cooks was an exceptional offseason acquisition for the Rams as he gives Goff more depth at wide receiver. Cooks is a deep threat receiver who has an unbelievable ability to create separation for big time plays. He excelled last season in New England and played a large role in getting them to the Super Bowl.
Along with the Offensive Player of the Year in Gurley, Aaron Donald, the Rams’ top pass rusher, was named Defensive Player of the Year. He is one of the most dynamic players in all of football as he finished last season with 11 sacks and five forced fumbles.
To compliment Donald’s ferociousness up front, the Rams acquired Ndamukong Suh, who is perhaps one of the most aggressive defensive linemen in the NFL. The two of them will certainly wreak havoc on opposing offenses all season.
Finally, as if the Rams had any holes in their roster, they have added two of the NFL’s top defensive backs: Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib in their lineup. With quarterbacks already fearing the defensive line, this Los Angeles secondary is going to make quarterbacking a nightmare for opposing teams.
With all key components of their roster seemingly filled with top players, the Rams are bound to make quite the run this season. Do not be surprised when this talented group is crowned Super Bowl LIII Champions.
Why the Los Angeles Rams Will Win Super Bowl LII
By Ethan Ticehurst ’18
After being one of the worst teams in the league for more than a decade, the Los Angeles Rams have emerged as a major threat to the rest of the league this season. With a record of 6-2, they have shown that they are capable of winning. A league-leading average of 32.9 points per game proves that they are capable of winning big too.
The biggest advantage that they have this year is the fact that they were so awful last year. It may seem a bit counter-intuitive, but going from worst to first is actually easier to do in the NFL than in any other professional sports league. Due to the shorter season, NFL teams do not have to play every team in the league every season. The NFL crafts the schedule so that all teams in the same conference that all finished in the same position in their divisions will play each other the next year. Thanks to a bad season last year, the Rams not only have an improved team, they also get to play against some of the worst teams in the league. They will only improve upon their already solid record, picking up a top playoff spot.
Once they are in the playoffs, the Rams have just as of much of a chance as anyone else to make the Super Bowl and to win it. They have a strong offense that puts up over 30 points a game consistently which can carry them through to the end. The Lombardi Trophy will be coming back to the city of Los Angeles this year.