LA Rams Aaron Donald’s date with destiny? Beware Bengals

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /

LA Rams All-Pro defensive lineman Aaron Donald does not harbor any malice towards any of the Cincinnati Bengals offensive linemen. They are simply the doorway, the conduit, that now comes between Donald and his ultimate goal, earning a Super Bowl ring. Aaron Donald has to go through the Bengals, and that means that he must go through any offensive lineman who gets it his way.

Of course, the Bengals have the advantage of knowing all about the prowess and forcefulness of Donald and have had two weeks to prepare a strategy to neutralize him, or at least slow him down. In a regular-season game, that may have been enough. But this is Super Bowl LVI. This is the final game that stands between Donald and the Lombardi Trophy.

Most of all, this year Aaron Donald has brought his friends.

He is not alone

The Rams will have Leonard Floyd, Von Miller, Sebastian Joseph-Day, Greg Gaines, A’Shawn Robinson, and Ogbonnia Okoronkwo with him. And they will all be chasing down and stuffing anyone who happens to hold the football.  At any point in time, four players from this group will be after quarterback Joe Burrow or running back Joe Mixon.

Four LA Rams defensive players will line up against five Cincinnati Bengals offensive linemen in the trenches with each snap of the football. Thanks to the NFL’s blind-eye rule, there will likely not be many offensive holding penalties called in this one. In fact, that is something that Donald has simply had to come to peace with.

The last time the Rams faced a questionable offensive line like that of the Bengals was the opening day of the 2020 NFL Season against the Dallas Cowboys at SoFi Stadium. In that game, Aaron Donald was accurately described as a ‘Wrecking Ball’. This game has the same feel. The buzz is more focused on the Rams opponent, and the impact of Donald in taking over a game like this is being swept under the carpet. Well, by some.

Don’t believe it. Aaron Donald has been relatively quiet in the postseason, committing to a disciplined approach. But at some point, Donald will make his presence felt in this one. When that happens, sit back and enjoy it.

As the dust settles, I could see Donald ending the day with 2+ quarterback sacks and 5+ tackles. This is the last game for the Rams in order to hoist the Lombardi Trophy. You can bet that LA Rams Aaron Donald has saved the best for last.

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