Heading into NFL Championship Sunday, what is a Los Angeles Rams fan to do?
The NFC title game pits the San Francisco 49ers against the Philadelphia Eagles and over in the AFC it’s a rematch from last year between the Kansas City Chiefs and Cincinnati Bengals.
Last year at this time the Rams were the talk of the NFL, with Odell Beckham Jr. and Matthew Stafford riding high, the Rams eeked past the Niners and into the Super Bowl.
On Sunday, what should Ram fans do? Do we spend all day at the beach? Cutting grass? Spending time with the wife and kids (heavens no). Who should a Rams fan be rooting for Sunday and why? We got beef you know.
Let’s make a pro and con list for each of the remaining four teams.
All-Time Series: The Bengals are 8-6 against the Rams all time, but that doesn’t count Super Bowl LVI, so we will take it.
Ram Connections: Bengals reserve linebacker Clay Johnston started his NFL career with the Rams as a free agent in 2020. The Rams cut him after two months. Of course, the biggest connection between the Rams and Bengals is Bengals head coach Zac Taylor who was on Sean McVay’s original staff back in 2017. He was wide receivers coach for the Rams in 2017, then quarterbacks coach before being named Bengals head coach in 2019.
Do we got beef? Of the four teams, Rams fans probably like the Bengals the best. Since we beat them in the Super Bowl last year, we don’t mind if they win it this year.
Kansas City Chiefs
All-Time Series: Kansas City leads the all-time series against the Rams 8-5. They trounced us in 2002, 49-10, which was the sixth worse loss in franchise history and beat the Rams pretty good this year. But, the Rams beat the Chiefs 54-51 in that epic Monday Night Football game back in 2018.
Ram Connections: Former Rams tight end Kendall Blanton is now on the Chiefs practice squad. Blanton played in a bunch of games for the Rams in 2021, but was picked up by the Chiefs just before Thanksgiving. And for old-time Ram fans, Chiefs defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo was the St. Louis Rams head coach for three years (2009-2011). He went 1-15, 7-9 and 2-14, so he’s not going to make the Rams Ring of Honor any time soon.
Do we got beef? Not really. The Chiefs are easy to like with Patrick Mahomes doing all sorts of crazy things, only hardcore Ram fans would still be mad at Spags.
All-Time Series: The Eagles are 21-18-1 against the Rams all-time. In fact the Eagles have dominated this series for a while. The Rams beat Philly 37-19 in 2020 and that was the first time the Rams had beaten the Eagles since 2004. The Rams did destroy the Eagles 42-3 back in 1975, one of the biggest wins in franchise history. Man, the Rams were good that year (look it up sometime).
Ram Connections: It’s a big one, Robert Quinn is still bouncing around the NFL and is a player on the Eagles defensive line. Quinn was a star for the Rams back in St. Louis and then in Los Angeles. He made the Pro Bowl twice as a Ram back in 2013 and 2014.
Do we got beef? No, in fact, it’s pretty clear that any Ram fan should be wearing green on Sunday afternoon because….
San Francisco 49ers
All-Time Series: The Niners are 76-67-3 against the Rams all-time. Incredibly, the Rams have a losing record against every team left in the playoffs. The Rams have played the Niners twice in the playoffs, losing the 1990 NFC Championship Game – badly – and winning the 2022 Championship Game. But the Niners are the Rams rival, having been in the NFC West together forever. We don’t like the Niners. They clobbered the Rams 48-0 back in 1987 when the Rams started Steve Dils at quarterback and the Niners played both Steve Young and Joe Montana. That’s the worst loss in franchise history.
Ram Connections: There’s the connection between the two head coaches, McVay and Kyle Shanahan worked together back in Washington before going out to the West Coast. The Niners have former Rams defensive end/linebacker Samson Ebukam. He’s had a good year for the Niners with a career-high five sacks, so he’s really one who got away. Then there’s the whole Christian McCaffrey thing, the Rams made a big offer to Carolina for him this season, but the Panthers sent him to the Niners instead.
Do we got beef? Oh yeah. The Niners swept the Rams this season and have been the big bully up the road that the Rams have struggled to get through. I hate to say it, but the Niners are good. The defense is tough and it seems no matter who they use at quarterback it works, but it’ll be a cold day in LA before a Ram fan roots for the Niners.