Pick a Side: Your Guide to Choosing a Rooting Interest in Sunday’s Big Game
Everyone is looking for a rooting interest in Sunday’s Big Game. Here is all you need to know on which team has the advantage in a multitude of different categories.
So, if you’re looking to align with either the Rams or the Bengals on Sunday Night, here are some fun factors to consider before hitching your wagon to either team:
Who is the underdog: Bengals. The Rams are a roughly 4.5-point favorite.
Records against the Spread: LA is just 10-10 this season against the spread, while Cincinnati is 13-7.
Taking Care of the Football: The Bengals have the best turnover differential in this year’s playoffs (+5), while LA stands at (0). In the regular season, Cincy finished at 0, with the Rams slightly ahead at +2.
Better Record: The Rams come in at 15-5, while Cincy is 13-7.
Longer win streak: Even. Both teams fell in the regular-season finale.
Better running game: Cincinnati. The Bengals average 102.5 yards on the ground this season. LA (99.0).
Higher Scoring team: Also even. Both teams averaged an identical 27.1 points per game this season.
Points per game allowed: Defense wins championships. The Rams have a slight edge here 21.9 to Cincy’s 22.1.
Now for some fun ones:
Dynasty Potential: If you’re rooting for one of these teams to have some staying power at the top, then you have to think Cincinnati. The Rams may be the more talented roster on Sunday, but with Burrow at the helm and a great career potentially in store, the Bengals are the team that could find themselves back here more often.
Which team has more local college athletes?: Rams. LA has four total local athletes, including South Dakota State’s Christian Rozeboom on the practice squad.
Which team is younger: Bengals. Cincinnati’s average age is 25.69 years vs. the Rams 25.76. Both teams are amongst the Top 10 youngest in the league by average age.
Which team has cooler colors: Rams. This article has the Bengals as having the 30th coolest threads in the league. LA came in at number four.
Which team has a better mascot: Bengals. No brainer.
Which mascot would win in a fight: A popular young fan’s way of picking the winner, this one also favors the Bengals.
Red vs. Blue: Yes, nothing goes together like a little political talk and the big game. California hasn’t gone Red in a Presidential election since 1988, while Ohio has been Red in 4 of the last 6 elections.
Which team’s State has a cooler state bird: Points for being more unique here go to LA. The California Quail surely outdoes the Cardinal (Ohio’s state bird), which is the State bird for a total of 7 States.
Which team has the oldest player: This would also benefit LA. Andrew Whitworth, who spent a long portion of his career (2006-2016) as a member of the Bengals, is the game’s oldest player at age 40. He is also the team’s starting left tackle.
Smaller city/fan base: Bengals. Although there are surely a lot more Bengals jersey’s around now then there were 5 years ago, the Bengals are one of the least popular teams in the league according to sportscasting.com.
Better Food City: Los Angeles. A quick search on city food staples gave LA’s Tacos the edge over Cincinnati’s Skyline Chili. Plus, it’s weird to eat chili with Spaghetti.
More iconic famous folks: Cincinnati has my vote here. I know that LA has a ton of great actors (Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Aniston, Angelina Jolie), but Cincy is home to Neil Armstrong, President William Howard Taft, and Steven Spielberg.
Better Looking Coach: Hands off ladies. Both coaches in Sunday’s game are taken, but in case you find yourself gazing lovingly on Sunday Night at the head honcho on the sidelines…this graph shows McVay as the 6th most attractive coach in the league as of this year, while Taylor came in at a respectable 15th.
There you have it, your list of meaningless criteria for you to pick a side in Sunday’s slugfest, or stump your friends and family at a fun gathering. Have fun, be safe, and enjoy the big game!
Stats: ESPN: Serving sports fans. Anytime. Anywhere.