Super Bowl LVI Recap


Photo credit: Hunter Deniaud

By Eliz Biary

The first Super Bowl was hosted by the city of Los Angeles in 1967 and the city last hosted the big event in 1993 where the Dallas Cowboys defeated the Buffalo Bills in the Rose Bowl stadium.

The last time the Cincinnati Bengals made a Super Bowl appearance was in 1988 at Joe Robbie Stadium in Miami, against the San Francisco 49ers. Unfortunately, the Bengals did not have the outcome they had hoped for as they lost 20-16. The Bengals have never won a Super Bowl, which brought Bengal fans excitement in their youthful team that had a chance to make history.

Another Super Bowl loss would lead the Cincinnati team to have the second-most appearances in the playoff game without any victories. The most being the Minnesota Vikings and Buffalo Bills, both with four appearances.

Moorpark College student Jared Rhett expressed his thoughts before the big game.

“The Bengals got into the Super Bowl with pure luck,” said Rhett. “They’re a decent team, but not good enough to have a chance against the Rams”.

Historically the Rams have established more of a winning culture than the Bengals, as they have more all-time wins and Super Bowl championships. The Rams started off in Los Angeles but moved as a franchise to St. Louis in 1946 and stayed until 2015.

In 2016 the team moved back and represented Los Angeles once again. The Rams made four other appearances in the Super Bowl, but their only victory was in 2000 when they were located in St. Louis. Starting quarterback Kurt Warner led the team with this win against the Titans with a score of 23-16.

Opposite of what many people assumed, the game ended in tight fashion as the Rams squeezed out the victory, 23-20, with a game-sealing sack by their star defensive tackle Aaron Donald. Not only was this their first Super Bowl victory since 2000, it was their first under coach Sean McVay.

Rams star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. scored the first touchdown of the game which gave the Rams an early lead. Beckham received the 17-yard strike from Stafford with 6:22 left in the first quarter. The Rams had to settle for a field goal after failing to reach the endzone. Cooper Kupp ended the drought with an 11-yard touchdown reception.

The Bengals answered back with their first touchdown as Tee Higgins caught a pass from the running back Joe Mixon. The first half ended with the Rams holding a 13-10 lead. The Bengals wasted no time as they scored a touchdown straight out of halftime. Burrow found Higgins on the first play from scrimmage in the second half where Higgins went 75 yards in one play for a touchdown.

Ventura running back Derek West jumps through the Moorpark defense, attempting for a first down during the Citrus Cup game on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021, in Moorpark, CA.
Ventura running back Derek West jumps through the Moorpark defense, attempting for a first down during the Citrus Cup game on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021, in Moorpark, CA. Photo credit: Ryan Bough

Moorpark College football player Will Mazucca discussed the outcome of the game and what Burrow could have done if he was fully healthy.

“Burrow ran out time. He was finally getting in the zone and then he hurt his knee,” said Mazucca. “I definitely think that he could have done more for the Bengals if he was in his best shape and not hurt.”

The Bengals then scored a field goal after securing one first down to extend their lead to 20-13. The Rams marched their way back down the field and Matt Gay made a 41-yard field goal to bring the game within four points. The Rams would get a key stop on the defensive end which gave them one final drive to win the game.

Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford made numerous clutch throws to lead the Rams down the field and with 1:25 left in the fourth quarter, Cooper Kupp caught the winning 1-yard touchdown. After the game, Kupp was awarded Super Bowl MVP after scoring two touchdowns on eight receptions.

Moorpark student Kenny Gaynes stated how the Bengals O-line could not stop the Rams’ aggressive front seven.

“The Bengals O-line could not hold back Aaron Donald which led Joe Burrow to get sacked repeatedly throughout the game.”

With the Rams’ victory, many fan favorites such as Odell Beckham Jr., Matthew Stafford, Aaron Donald, Andrew Whitworth and Eric Weddle received their first championship ring. Many rumors were spread about how coach McVay could step away from the team and how Aaron Donald could retire after the Super Bowl win but it was recently stated in the championship parade that they were both committed to running it back.

As the season is now complete, it is more obvious than ever that the league is in good hands. The young quarterback talent that this league has recently groomed will continue to create entertaining matchups for years to come.