The Los Angeles Rams’ Cooper Kupp has had one of the greatest receiving seasons in NFL history. Could he top it off with MVP honors of Super Bowl 56 on Sunday vs. the Cincinnati Bengals? Let’s break down Kupp’s career.
Los Angeles Rams vs. Cincinnati Bengals
Sunday, February 13, 2022 – 06:30 PM EST at SoFi Stadium
The greatest passing season by a quarterback in NFL history is clearly when Denver’s Peyton Manning set the league record in yards with 5,477 in 2013 and also had the most TD passes ever with 55. That’s not debatable.
What about the top receiving season in league history? Detroit’s Calvin Johnson set the NFL record with 1,964 yards in 2012; New Orleans’ Michael Thomas has the top receptions mark with 149 in 2019; and New England’s Randy Moss holds the TD catches mark with 23 in 2007 – interesting that clearly the best wideout ever, Jerry Rice, holds none of those records.
I submit to you that the Los Angeles’ Rams Cooper Kupp is having the best single-season by a receiver entering Super Bowl 56 against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. Kupp is a +550 third-favorite at BMR’s top-rated books to win Super Bowl MVP.
Kupp Was Legend at FCS Level
Kupp’s grandfather Jake Kupp, was a Pro Bowl guard for the New Orleans Saints in the 1970s. His father Craig was a quarterback and fifth-round pick by the New York Giants in 1990. Barely recruited out of Davis High School in Yakima, Wash., Cooper Kupp's two college scholarship offers were from Idaho State and Eastern Washington.
He became one of the best receivers in college football history, but at the FCS level with Eastern Washington. Kupp set numerous records at that level and won the Walter Payton Award, which is the FCS version of the Heisman Trophy. He was a four-time first-team All-American yet lasted until pick No. 69 in the 2017 draft when the Rams lucked out. Why did Kupp last that long? Honestly, because he’s white and not lightning fast.
As a rookie, Kupp had a fine debut in Los Angeles with 62 catches for 869 yards and five scores. He got injured the following year, missing about half of it, and then broke out with 94 catches for 1,161 yards and 10 TDs in 2019. Kupp’s numbers dropped in 2020 (92 catches, 974 yards, three TDs) largely because Rams QB Jared Goff regressed. Then, LA’s trade of Goff and draft picks for Matthew Stafford in January 2021 changed everything.
This season, Kupp led the NFL in receptions (145), receiving yards (1,947), and receiving touchdowns (16) to become the fourth player since the AFL/NFL merger to win that Triple Crown, joining Steve Smith (2005), Sterling Sharpe (1992) and Jerry Rice (1990).
While Kupp didn’t set a record in any of those categories, he’s probably going to be named NFL Offensive Player of the Year with Packers QB Aaron Rodgers winning MVP. When you add in Kupp’s postseason numbers of 25 catches for 386 yards and four TDs, he has had the best year of any wideout in history.
Winning Super Bowl MVP would guarantee that, although receivers have only won it seven times. The last to do so was the Patriots’ Julian Edelman three years ago in that 13-3 snoozer win over the Rams. Kupp didn’t play in that game due to injury. It’s hard for a receiver to win MVP because if he has a big game, that means his quarterback did, too.
At BMR’s top-rated books, Kupp is a +390 favorite to be the Super Bowl’s first TD scorer and a -190 anytime scorer. He has an Over/Under of 106.5 receiving yards, which is crazy high, and 8.5 catches. He’s -250 to have the most receiving yards of any player.
On cross-sport props, Kupp is +1.5 yards for longest reception (-115) vs. LeBron James points scored at -1.5 (-115) on Saturday at Golden State for the Lakers; Kupp’s receiving yards are +7.5 (-115) vs. Celtics points scored at -7.5 (-115) on Sunday vs. Atlanta.
Kupp’s longest reception in these playoffs was 70 yards vs. Tampa Bay, but that was a season-high by a sizable amount. LeBron averages 29.1 ppg. Kupp is averaging 128.7 receiving yards in the playoffs and the Celtics are averaging 108.1 ppg – but the Hawks are a terrible defensive team.
Cross-Sport Pick: LeBron James points (-115) vs. Kupp longest reception at BetOnline
Cross-Sport Pick: Celtics points (-115) vs. Kupp receiving yards at BetOnline
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.