Two years ago, the Cincinnati Bengals were the NFL’s worst team. Now they’re headed to the Super Bowl to play the Los Angeles Rams – in the Rams’ home stadium.
After their biggest comeback in the AFC championship game, the Bengals rose from the 18-point hole to beat Kansas City 27-24 in extra time on Sunday for their first trip to the big game since. 1988 season. The team won just two games in 2019, earning them the right to top draft overall, which they used over quarterback Joe Burrow, which had pretty much dominated the Captain after the first quarter.
Rookie Evan McPherson put on a 31-yard strike to win.
The Rams then overcame a 10-point shortfall in the second half and took the NFC crown with a 20-17 win over San Francisco when Matt Gay hit a 30-yard goal with 1:46 remaining. Los Angeles (15-5) lost six times in a row to the 49ers (12-8), but the guests couldn’t slow All-Pro recipient Cooper Kupp. Safety Jaquiski Tartt dropped a certain number of interceptions in the fourth round that helped LA end the game.
Kupp finished with 11 catches for 142 yards and two touchdowns.
In a brutal physical match that was also highlighted by some clutch play from Kupp and 49ers All-Pro recipient Deebo Samuel, Matthew Stafford raced 31 in 45 for 337 yards to reach the first Super Bowl. his ancestor. The Rams went there in the 2018 season, but lost to New England.
“We have one more game at home, let’s finish it,” Stafford said.
Samuel scored four goals for 72 yards and one point for 44 yards. He dashed another 26 yards.
The Rams have attended the previous four Super Bowl games, with a score of 1-3; The only victory came in the 1999 season when they were stationed in St. Louis.
Los Angeles is an early favorite 3 1/2 points according to FanDuel Sportsbook.
Stafford, who spent his first dozen NFL seasons in Detroit, added: “I’m so lucky to be a part of this team, with this group of boys, this team of coaches. “You couldn’t write a better story. I am speechless. I’m just having fun playing football with these guys…”
Team Bengal (13-7) reached their third Super Bowl; they lost to the 49ers in 1982 and 1989. Kansas City (14-6) hosted the AFC Championship for the fourth time in a row, and the score was 2-2 in those games. The Chiefs won the NFL title two years ago.
AFC North winner Cincinnati hadn’t won a post-season game since 1991 before beating Las Vegas, then claiming a road victory in the knockout stages for the first time in franchise history. commercial when the top seed Tennessee. The AFC West Chiefs champion moved to Pittsburgh and then won in extra time against Buffalo to win their fourth straight championship.
Burrow, who missed six games in the rookie season because of a knee injury, said: “We’ve been the second-half team all year. “You don’t really want to be like that, but that’s the way it is. Our defense really strengthened in the second half and in attack we made attacks when needed. … It was just a great team effort. ”
On Sunday, Burrow led them back and McPherson, like a 10-year veteran, made four goals in the game, including the one after Vonn Bell intercepted Patrick Mahomes in the open extra-time series. The top gave Cincinnati the ball.
“We were made for this moment. Bell said. “Never give up the fight. We are a resilient group. ”
Another 18-point rally in the AFC championship game came in the 2006 season when Indianapolis beat New England 36-34. Burrow might note that the quarterbacks in that competition were Peyton Manning and Tom Brady.
“We overcame a lot of deficits this year,” said coach Zac Taylor. “We always believe in all three of our phases. Everyone stepped up. We are not done yet. ”
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