Thanks in part to an epic 15-play, 79-yard game winning drive former Tigers Andrew Whitworth and Odell Beckham Jr. both won their first Super Bowl as the Los Angeles Rams beat the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20.
Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp was named Super Bowl LVI’s MVP after an 8-catch, 8- yard, 2-touchdown effort including catching the game winner with 1:25 to play.
Beckham’s night was cut short after going down with a non-contact injury to his left knee—the same knee that he tore in week seven of the 2020 season—but caught two balls for 52 yards including the opening touchdown of Super Bowl 56.
Whitworth, the newly named Walter Payton Man of the Year, was a rock at left tackle just as he’s been for the past 16 years. Whitworth has hinted that Sunday could very well be his last game and if this is indeed it he gets to walk away a champion.
As for our beloved, adopted Cincinnati Bengals they just couldn’t quite pull it off. Joe Burrow had a good game going 22-33 for 263 yards and a touchdown bomb to Tee Higgins to open the second half, and Ja’Marr Chase caught five passes for 89 yards. Chase even caught a 46-yard pass with one hand which gave me flashbacks to his national championship performance against Clemson.
But the Bengals couldn’t get out of their own way and some questionable officiating only added to their demise.
With the Rams driving late in the fourth quarter, Bengals linebacker Logan Wilson was called for a ticky tack holding penalty on third and goal that otherwise would’ve set up a do or die fourth and goal. The Rams would score four plays later. Was there a hold? Sure. But the officials had largely been letting things go and for whatever reason inserted themselves into the game.
Logan Wilson was in great position refs almost never call this plus with the way they let them play the entire game you can’t just switch up when the entire game is on the line on this one play u have to stay true pic.twitter.com/tAljNpDgvJ— Lil ️ey ️ey (@CP3PO2) February 14, 2022
But if the Bengals had a better offensive line or made smarter play calls maybe the hold wouldn’t have mattered. Burrow’s offensive line failed him once again which led to him getting sacked seven times tonight. And with the Bengals facing a 3rd and 1 at midfield, Bengals head coach ran the ball with second string running back Samaje Perine (2 carries 0 yards) instead of Joe Mixon who was averaging nearly five yards a carry; then on 4th and 1 with the Super Bowl on the line, the Bengals called a pass play and the offensive line failed Burrow one final time.
Hopefully this won’t be the last time Burrow and Chase have the opportunity to compete for a Super Bowl, but if the Bengals don’t upgrade their offensive line I’m afraid it will be.
Anyway. While I’m sure most of us were pulling for the Bengals, let’s give it up for Andrew Whitworth and Odell Beckham Jr.