With Aaron Donald’s contract extension done, the Super Bowl MVP is the next man up.
Cooper Kupp was named Super Bowl LVI MVP and Offensive Player of the Year, making him only the third wide receiver to capture the award. Based on annual salary, Kupp ranks 16th in the NFL among all receivers. He’s coming off a season in which he led the NFL in receptions (145), yards (1,947), and touchdown catches (16), winning the receiving triple crown. Including the playoffs, it was truly one of the best seasons ever by a wide receiver: 178 catches, 2,425 yards, and 22 touchdowns.
Upon winning the Offensive Player of the Year award, Kupp had this to say, “The Rams’ history of wide receivers, it goes back even, you know, 50, 60, 70 years, really,” Kupp said. “So, you know, having guys like Torry and Bruce stick around, I mean, those guys are very involved still with the LA Rams and have been able to, you know, have them come in here and talk to us and be able to pick their brains on certain things and their willingness. Also, share about what stuff they’ve seen a lot of the experiences they have in this league.”,
In the closing moments of Super Bowl LVI, 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 a penalty. Aaron Donald sealed the Rams’ first Super Bowl victory since the 1999 season with the pressure of Joe Burrow on fourth down.
The Rams have made it clear they intend on rewarding Kupp with a nice pay raise and he has stated that he isn’t making demands that would cripple the Rams.
The Super Bowl LVI MVP isn’t like his fellow receivers in that he’s not interested in making NFL history with all the dollars and cents that could potentially be included in his new deal. Kupp said in April he’s more interested in a fair deal that keeps him with the Los Angeles Rams. Recently, he expounded upon that idea.
“I try to help where I can,” Kupp said, via The Athletic, (H/T Pro Football Talk). “I don’t want to be in the dark on this thing. I also love this organization. I want to be here for a very long time, and to be doing things with these guys — not just the guys on the field, I want to be a part of this organization [in its] growth and the places I think this organization is going. And so I want this to be something that makes sense for everyone. I want them to feel good about it, and I think the best way to do that is for me to at least be involved in some capacity. It’s never going to be at the cost of anything on the football field, [but] the more communication, the better, and just be able to find a place we can all feel good.”
Now, after signing Aaron Donald to a cap-friendly extension, the Rams appear to have the flexibility to do the same for Kupp and perhaps resign OBJ as well.