In a roundtable discussion on ESPN.com, more analysts favored the Rams over the Bucs to represent the NFC in Super Bowl LVI. Los Angeles, which traded away Jared Goff and several first round picks for Matt Stafford this offseason, is coming off a 10-6 season. The Rams finished second in the NFC West, but advanced to the divisional round of the playoffs after beating division winner Seattle 30-20 in the Wild Card round.

In the roundtable responses, three ESPN analysts – Matt Bowen, Dan Graziano and Seth Walder – picked the Rams as the NFC representative for Super Bowl LVI. All three picked the Rams to lose to their AFC opponent, with the trio each picking different winners.

Two other analysts, Mike Clay and Kevin Seifert, chose Tampa Bay as the NFC champion. Clay also picked the Bucs to repeat as Super Bowl champions. A sixth analyst, Jeremy Fowler, selected the Packers to defeat the Bills in his Super Bowl prediction.

The Bucs and Rams face each other in Week 3, as Stafford tries to replicate what Tom Brady did a year ago in Tampa Bay. The Rams will be a formidable foe as long as Sean McVay is there, despite the fact that they lost some key defensive pieces in safety John Johnson, cornerback Troy Hill and innovative defensive coordinator Brandon Staley. Replacing Staley will be Raheem Morris, whose Falcons’ defenses were lit up by the Bucs for a combined 75 points in two meetings last year.

Tampa Bay is looking to become the first franchise to repeat as Super Bowl champions since Brady and the Patriots did it in 2002 and 2003. The Bucs 2021 schedule was recently ranked as the most favorable in the NFL by Clay.

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About the Author: Jon Ledyard

Jon Ledyard is PewterReport.com's newest Bucs beat writer and has experience covering the Pittsburgh Steelers as a beat writer and analyzing the NFL Draft for several draft websites, including The Draft Network. Follow Ledyard on Twitter at @LedyardNFLDraft
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ScottC543
1 month ago

The “experts” at ESPN have long been know-nothing asshats. Seriously. Take anything they say or rate about the NFL with a huge grain of salt.

Last edited 1 month ago by ScottC543
Hockey Duckie
Reply to  ScottC543
1 month ago

If everyone was autonomous in thought that the Bucs would repeat, then why read ESPN? You have to figure there would be a need for diverse thought to give readers some intrigue or rile up the bases like you did here.
Remember, sports is still an entertainment business. There’s no entertainment if the outcomes are all the same.

Gatordoc1
Reply to  ScottC543
1 month ago

I believe asshats everywhere are insulted by your comparison to ESPN analysts.

Buc76
Reply to  ScottC543
1 month ago

Dan Graziano is a complete stooge. Stafford has never won a playoff game. what idiots. They won’t even beat the Lions this year. McVay is losing his marbles.

Schwifty9
1 month ago

The experts must really love Tutu Atwell.

PissedOffBuc1988
1 month ago

Good. Pick the rams. Unlike majority of the league, Tampa does their talking on the field. The thing about bringing everyone back is that now they all get the opportunity to go through a full off season. “Well other teams get that too” yeah, I know, but this team is different. The comrodery of this team is not something to sleep on. When all key players are retained and everyone on the roster is making sacrifices for their brothers, that tells you that everyone is on the same page. Let Kansas city get brown. Let all these other teams do… Read more »

Horse
1 month ago

The more underdog we are, the better our chances.

eaustinyoung
1 month ago

I’m a fan of humility. I like the Bucs to lose 1 game they shouldn’t (Bears), and be humiliated by a “better” team (Saints week 9). Losing a couple of games is good for the postseason. Otherwise you underestimate your opponent (Chiefs last year).

M4X
M4X
Reply to  eaustinyoung
1 month ago

The Saints are no longer a “better” team. They lost more than 10 players who played meaningful snaps + Drew Brees. They will win no more than 4-8 games, depending on how bad Jameis plays.

eaustinyoung
Reply to  M4X
1 month ago

I was talking about last year.

76Buc
1 month ago

Another LA pick by the media. Gee what a shocker. Pinkies up everyone. Bring me another white wine. Oh, and more sushi too. LMAO

drdneast
Reply to  76Buc
1 month ago

Hear that!

Naplesfan
1 month ago

It’s a free country, and analysts are free to pick whom they like. My question is, of these “experts” on CNN, how many of them picked Kansas City to beat the Bucs in the Super Bowl this year? I am pretty sure hardly any of the so-called experts picked the Bucs to beat the Chiefs. Nor did they pick the Bucs to beat the Packers, nor did the same experts pick the Bucs to beat the Saints in the playoffs earlier this year. So I want to see the picking record of these particular experts, then we’ll be able to… Read more »

Naplesfan
Reply to  Naplesfan
1 month ago

OK, so I went back and looked up ESPN’s “expert” picks for Super Bowl VV. Those picking the Bucs to win were Wickersham, Graziano, and Clay. The other six “experts” including Bowen, Kimes, Reid, Rutledge, Seifert, and Ruddy all picked the Chiefs to win. 2/3 picked the Chiefs and only 1/3 picked the Bucs, even after they beat the Packers in the Conference Championship game in which they were picked to get destroyed themselves by the vast majority of “experts”. Only 1 of the “experts” (Reid) picked the Bucs to beat the Packers. The “experts” did much better on the… Read more »

MCBRICKEL
1 month ago

Maybe I set the bar low, but it’s nice just to be part of the conversation.

Captain Sly
Reply to  MCBRICKEL
1 month ago

I’m with you, I feel no disrespect from this whatsoever. Rams have a loaded roster choke full of high priced FA and perhaps the best player in football (Aaron Donald) perhaps the best coach in football (Sean McVay). There only problem is that they don’t get to play the Panthers, Falcons, and Jamies Winston twice in one season. Just a little too sensitive IHMO

drdneast
1 month ago

Would someone print this article and send it to Tom Brady.

inspecto
Reply to  drdneast
1 month ago

will do

fredster
1 month ago

Bucs may or may not repeat but to say Rams have better shot with all the change is Asinine to me. They don’t have same defense or weapons and Stafford can’t hold Brady’s jock strap. Lol

cozart
1 month ago

I get it, it’s tuff to repeat. But I really hope our boys are reading this garbage. We will eat Raheem “Radio” Morris’s D for lunch. And if our D continues where they left off we will walk all over McVay and Stafford too!

plopes808
1 month ago

So they’re expecting to see the “Brady effect” from Stafford? He’s good, but I doubt it

scubog
1 month ago

I personally don’t take offense by some “expert’s or fan”s predictions of the upcoming season. I guess it’s all too common nowadays to become outraged at another person’s opinion if it differs from our own. There’s certainly logic to suggesting the Rams, Packers, Saints and a few other possible surprises could represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.

Our once “lowly” Bucs (Yucks) have been underrated, disrespected and scoffed at for decades. I for one, can remain a bit humble and respond with a confident smirk and simply say, “we’ll see”.

Dave
1 month ago

Brady has 7 times as many SB rings, as Stafford has playoff wins lol. But sure, let’s make the Rams the favorite. Makes perfect sense. Obviously, anything is possible. If the Rams were SB champs at seasons end, or at least NFC champs, would it shock me? No. “On paper”, the team is loaded. Defense, QB, running game, pass catchers(although I still don’t think they have a bonafide #1 WR), and an elite HC. But experience winning big games matters. It just does. You don’t think, that if the Rams have to face the Bucs in the NFC championship game,… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Dave