INGLEWOOD, Calif. -- The receiving king is a Super Bowl champion -- and an MVP.
Kupp caught the game-winning touchdown pass, a reception from one yard out with 1:25 remaining in regulation to give the Rams a 23-20 lead over the Bengals after a wild sequence in which an earlier Kupp touchdown was wiped out by penalty. Teammate Aaron Donald sealed the franchise's first Super Bowl triumph since the 1999 season with a pressure of Joe Burrow on fourth down.
"Man, just so proud of this team, the way we prepared, the way we loved on each other, trusted each other," Kupp told NBC's Mike Tirico after the game. "I don't know. I just don't feel deserving of this. God is just so good. I'm just so thankful for the guys I get to be around, for the coaches, for my family. I don't know what to say."
Kupp is just the eighth wide receiver to be named Super Bowl MVP and the first since Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman in Super Bowl LIII. Kupp joins 49ers great Joe Montana (1989) as the only players to win AP Offensive Player of the Year and Super Bowl MVP in the same season.
The Rams receiver's performance was stellar on its own, but even more important and remarkable when considering the Rams lost his running mate, Odell Beckham, to a knee injury in the second quarter. Without Beckham, Los Angeles' offense struggled for much of the second half, but Kupp played a crucial role in Los Angeles' final scoring drive, catching four passes, including a key 22-yard reception to move the Rams deep into Bengals territory. He also had a 7-yard run for a fourth-down conversion on the drive
Before the game-winning score, Kupp caught a touchdown pass and took a hard hit from Bengals safety Vonn Bell, drawing a flag that offset with Rob Havenstein's holding penalty, forcing the teams to replay the down. Determined to find the owner of the NFL's receiving triple crown, Stafford targeted Kupp on two of the next three plays, drawing a defensive pass interference flag on Bengals corner Eli Apple. Two plays later, Stafford finally connected with Kupp, lofting a pass to his top target who won the one-on-one battle with Apple for the go-ahead score.
Kupp finished with eight catches for 92 yards and two touchdowns. The first gave the Rams a 10-point lead. The second crowned them world champions.