The Rams Wire
Though the Bengals didn’t boast a star-studded defense, it was a unit that played its best football at the end of the season. And against a high-powered offense like the Rams’, Cincinnati deserves credit for the way it performed in Super Bowl LVI.
Matthew Stafford was just a little bit better, finding a way to get the job done down the stretch. He finished the game with 283 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions – one of which wasn’t his fault. He didn’t put up those numbers by dinking and dunking his way down the field, either.
He averaged 8.7 intended air yards, which was higher than his season average of 8.5. He also threw it 0.9 yards beyond the sticks per attempt, considerably higher than Joe Burrow’s -2.1 average in the Super Bowl.
Stafford’s passing chart from Next Gen Stats shows how he attacked the Bengals defense, throwing a ton of passes in the intermediate range of 10-19 yards downfield. He completed 8 of those 12 attempts for 154 yards and two touchdowns, though his interception came in that range, too, after a pass went off Ben Skowronek’s hands.
Matthew Stafford gained a majority of his production on intermediate passes (10-19 air yards) in the #Rams 23-20 victory.
Stafford on Intermediate Passes
— Next Gen Stats (@NextGenStats) February 14, 2022
That was the sweet spot for Stafford all season long and he delivered on intermediate throws once again in the biggest game of his life. He clearly favored the right side of the field, which is typical for Stafford, leaning on Cooper Kupp, Van Jefferson and even Brycen Hopkins on several of those throws.
He held the ball slightly longer than usual, averaging 2.93 seconds per throw compared to 2.8 seconds during the regular season. The pass protection was really good and allowed Stafford to survey the field before the pass rush could pressure him.