With Super Bowl LVI now within sight, football fans all across the States are gearing up for the biggest sporting event of the year. On February 13th 2022, the two winners of the AFC and the NFC Championships will square off in the atmospheric environs of the SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles, California. But who will take to the field – and who is most likely to triumph on it?
Unfortunately, the odds for Chiefs to win the Super Bowl for a second year running fell flat earlier this month when they were dumped out of the play-offs by the Los Angeles Rams. They’ll be joined in the NFC final by the San Francisco 49ers, while the AFC division title will be contested by the Kansas City Chiefs and the Cincinnati Bengals. Here’s a closer look at the credentials of each of those teams in isolation.
Kansas City Chiefs
At this stage of the competition, the Chiefs have to be the favorites to lift the Super Bowl trophy in February. On a red-hot run of form, they’ve lost just once in the last 13 outings – though it should be noted that their single defeat came against Cincinnati, the team they’ll play for a place at SoFi. Nonetheless, with a strong defense behind them and Patrick Mahomes doing his Patrick Mahomes thing, no one would bat an eyelid if the Chiefs were to emerge with the Vincent Lombardi this year.
Although the Bengals will go into their showdown with the Chiefs as slight underdogs, there is an argument to say they are not deserving of that tag. After an impressive regular season performance which saw them pick up 12 wins, they stamped their authority on their AFC challenge at the end of December with a crushing victory over the Baltimore Ravens, before following that up with a statement win against the Chiefs. Repeat the feat once more and they’ll have one hand on the trophy.
Los Angeles Rams
Should they overcome the 49ers in their NFC Championship matchup, the Rams would become only the second team in NFL history to contest the Super Bowl on home turf. Of course, they’ll be hoping to go one better than that and emulate Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who became the first team to win the title in their own stadium last time around. If the defense can hold firm and allow Matthew Stafford to play to his full potential – and if Stafford manages to steer clear of his darker side – the Rams could be onto a good thing.
San Francisco 49ers
Roll back a couple of months and the 49ers weren’t even in the conversation for Super Bowl LVI for many observers of the sport. However, credit must be given where it is due and after an unconvincing regular season, they’re peaking at just the right time. Dispatching both the Cowboys and the Packers in the run-up to their Championship game will have given them great confidence, so it’s up to the team from San Fran to push on and claim their first title in almost 30 years.
Have you got Super Bowl fever yet? Which of the four teams do you fancy to take the Vincent Lombardi home? Have your say below.