It's an unexpected 56th Super Bowl matchup between the Cincinnati Bengals and Los Angeles Rams, but it should be an exciting one nonetheless. This marks the first Super Bowl in NFL history that does not feature any of the top three seeds in either conference. It will take place at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California -- the first time in NFL history that a team will host a conference championship game and the Super Bowl in the same season, with the Rams taking that honor.
The NFL regular season was extended to 17 games this season, which created an 18-week season for the first time since 1993 (when the NFL had two bye weeks), and every portion of the schedule was pushed back a week. That means the NFL's longest season ever will culminate with the latest Super Bowl in league history.
The regular season still started on the second week of September, but the playoffs started in the third week in January, instead of the second week as in previous years. That pushed the Super Bowl back to the second week of February for the first time, the newest spot on the calendar after 17 years of being played in the first week of February.
This year's Super Bowl will be played on Sunday, Feb. 13 -- the latest date for a Super Bowl in NFL history.
How to watch Super Bowl LVI
This Super Bowl will be the eighth in the Los Angeles area and the first in Inglewood, California (home of SoFi Stadium). The last Super Bowl to be held in the Los Angeles area was at the Rose Bowl in 1993 (the last of five Super Bowls hosted at the iconic site). The 2022 Super Bowl will be the first one held at a new venture since Super Bowl LIII was held at Atlanta's Mercedes-Benz Stadium in 2019. It will be the seventh first-time venue for the Super Bowl in the last 12 years.
This is the fifth trip to the Super Bowl for the Rams franchise and third while located in Los Angeles. They made two additional trips while located in St. Louis and won it all in 2000 against the Titans. The team's last appearance was in Super Bowl 53, which they lost 13-3 to the New England Patriots. The Bengals are attempting to win their first Super Bowl championship.