The Bengals upset the reigning AFC champion Chiefs in Kansas City, and the Rams snapped a six-game losing streak to their division rival 49ers. Now, Cincinnati and Los Angeles are set to square off in the biggest game of the biggest season in NFL history: Super Bowl LVI. Can Joe Burrow, Ja’Marr Chase and the young, upstart Bengals steal the spotlight yet again, this time on the grandest stage in all of sports? Or are the glitzy Rams, assembled like an all-star team with Matthew Stafford, Cooper Kupp and Odell Beckham Jr. leading the way, destined to become the second straight NFL team to win it all in their own stadium?
Either way, this Super Bowl is gonna be must-see TV. Here’s everything you need to know in advance of the big game:
When is the Super Bowl?
The Bengals and Rams will square off on Sunday, Feb. 13, at 6:30 p.m. ET.
Where is the Super Bowl?
Super Bowl LVI will be played at SoFi Stadium, in Inglewood, California. That’s the home of both the Rams and Chargers, so Sean McVay and Co. will have a chance to become the second straight team to win a championship in its own home after Tom Brady and the Buccaneers routed the Chiefs in Tampa, Florida, to close the 2020 season.
How to watch the Super Bowl
TV: NBC | Stream: fuboTV (try for free)
Who’s favored to win?
Immediately following the Rams’ NFC Championship win over the 49ers, Los Angeles entered the week as 4-point favorites in Super Bowl LVI over the Bengals.
Key Bengals vs. Rams matchups
- Joe Burrow vs. Aaron Donald: More like Cincy’s O-line versus Los Angeles’ front seven, but you get the picture. Burrow absorbed a record nine sacks in the Bengals’ win over the Titans earlier this postseason, but he stayed upright against the Chiefs on Sunday. Donald and the Rams, however, boast one of the nastiest fronts in the NFL, so it’ll be imperative that Zac Taylor and the Bengals’ staff gets creative, if necessary, to keep their star QB on his feet.
- Ja’Marr Chase vs. Jalen Ramsey: One of the game’s top playmaking pass-catchers against one of the game’s top cover men. Chase has made electrifying plays against virtually everyone in his historic rookie campaign, but Ramsey is no stranger to big-time one-on-ones. If the Rams’ front gets after Burrow, this matchup might be especially crucial as the Bengals QB looks to loft it up for his go-to game-changer.
- Sean McVay vs. Zac Taylor: The latter emerged from under McVay in Los Angeles, and now he has a chance to upstage his fellow young gun on the biggest stage of them all. McVay squandered his timeouts in the NFC Championship and has gone conservative in some odd spots over the years, but he may have a chance to put the pedal to the floor if Matthew Stafford can take advantage of Cincy’s defense early.
Bengals vs. Rams prediction
Latest Odds: Los Angeles Rams -4.5
Don’t hold me to this (unless it turns out to be right), but here’s the early assessment: my heart says Bengals, but my head says Rams. Can Los Angeles be trusted? Probably not. For all their star power, they’ve now survived two straight playoff wins by the skin of their teeth, and you might say that about the Bengals, too, except the Rams were literally built to win it all. They are the win-now team, assembled with one big-name veteran after another. Cincy feels like the right call, with all their fun-loving, expectation-shattering youth. But Aaron Donald and the Rams’ defensive front is a different animal, and we saw in Tennessee what can happen when Joe Burrow’s blocking is up against real pressure. If Sean McVay can actually put a game plan together, L.A. should be able to do quite a bit more than it did against the 49ers, and that spells a big-play win at home.
Pick: Rams 29, Bengals 26