Sports Take: Super Bowl LVI Predictions

The interior of SoFi Stadium is seen days before the Super Bowl NFL football game Tuesday, Feb. 8, 2022, in Inglewood, Calif. The Los Angeles Rams are scheduled to play the Cincinnati Bengals in the Super Bowl on Sunday, Feb. 13. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

By Lariat Sports Desk

In what few fans expected going into this season and even going into the playoffs, the Super Bowl LVI stage is all set for an exciting matchup against the Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, Calif. Here are our expert picks for what we think is going to happen during the Feb. 13 showdown.

Marquis Cooley | Sports Editor

Score: Rams 28 Bengals 24

MVP: Matthew Stafford

Reasoning: The Cincinnati Bengals have defied all expectations this season behind quarterback Joe Burrow, but this is a different test. The offensive line has been a problem for the Bengals all season and now they’re about to go up against the strongest defense they’ve seen so far this postseason. It’s incredibly hard to go all the way your first time in the playoffs and I think the Los Angeles Rams’ postseason experience will make the difference. Also, it’s time for quarterback Matthew Stafford to solidify himself as a top quarterback in the NFL after wasting his talent in Detroit. Wouldn’t it be poetic for Stafford to lead the Rams on a game-winning drive for his first Super Bowl win?

Michael Haag | Sports Writer

Score: Rams 38 Bengals 31

MVP: Matthew Stafford

Reasoning: The Los Angeles Rams have contended for the Super Bowl for the last several seasons and this is the year they will get over the hump. With future Hall of Fame quarterback Matthew Stafford under center, experience and poise in the biggest moments will ultimately give the Rams the victory. The Louisiana State University connection of quarterback Joe Burrow and wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase is definitely a great storyline, but it’s not their time yet. This hungry Rams team will show the country what they’re made of.

AnnaGrace Hale | Sports Intern

Score: Rams 31 Bengals 28

MVP: Matthew Stafford

Reasoning: Although the Cincinnati Bengals have been impressive all season, specifically with the pairing of quarterback Joe Burrow and wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase, the Los Angeles Rams will be holding the Vince Lombardi Trophy in their home stadium on Sunday. If quarterback Matthew Stafford can connect with wide receiver Cooper Kupp for some big offensive plays and defensive tackle Aaron Donald stays reliable on defense, this team can win the title. In addition, the Rams have experienced some big losses, such as the 2018 Super Bowl loss to the New England Patriots, only fueling their fire. They are hungry. The Bengals team is younger, but their future is bright. Now is just not their time for a victory drive.

Gio Gennero | Sports Writer

Score: Rams 28 Bengals 21

MVP: Cooper Kupp

Reasoning: The Los Angeles Rams have been a quarterback away from being a real threat to win it all for a few years now. Their defense is elite and stacked with talent. With an already all-time great defensive tackle Aaron Donald and debatably the best cornerback in the league in Jalen Ramsey, their defense is going to cause problems. Especially considering the Cincinnati Bengals have given up a lot of sacks all season. They gave up nine sacks in their divisional round matchup with the Tennessee Titans. As much as I love quarterback Joe Burrow and want to see him get it done, I believe this hill might be too high to climb for the Bengals right now. I can see them getting back to the Super Bowl soon though.