Three of the Happiest Rams on Earth Go to Disneyland in a Tradition That Started 35 Years Ago

Phil Simms was the first player to look into the camera and shout those famous words, or a variation on them, starting a Disney and NFL Super Bowl tradition that continues with three Rams players.

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Cooper Kupp, Matthew Stafford and Aaron Donald are going to Disneyland in a post-Super Bowl tradition that began 35 years ago in Southern California.

The three Rams played key roles Sunday in the team’s first Super Bowl victory as a Los Angeles team, defeating the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20. They appeared in the annual "what's next" Disney commercial, shot on the field after each Super Bowl, before their Monday afternoon visit to the Anaheim theme park.

Here's what to know about the Happiest Commercial on Earth and how it all started.

Who is in the 2022 “I’m going to Disneyland” commercial?

Kupp, Stafford and Donald were joined by their families on the field shortly after the game to shout, “We're all going to Disneyland.” The commercial, shot and produced by NFL Films to air after the game ends, also features several Make-A-Wish children who made a wish to attend the game and cheer on the Rams.

In the ads, the song “When You Wish Upon a Star" plays over shots of the player -- or in this case, players. At the end, an announcer mentions the Super Bowl win and asks, “What are you going to do next?"

Cut to a shot of happy player/s shouting on cue and you have the format for a 35-year tradition.

Super Bowl LVI in Pictures

Who first said, ‘I’m going to Disneyland/Disney World’?

The “what's next'' commercial began in 1987 and featured New York Giants quarterback Phil Simms after he was chosen the MVP of Super Bowl XXI. After defeating the Denver Broncos 39-20 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, an ecstatic Simms shouted into the camera, “I’m going to go to Disney World.” 

“I was approached about it maybe the Tuesday before the Super Bowl,” Simms, now an in-studio TV analyst, told the Los Angeles Times. “My agent, David Fishof, told me and I said, ‘No chance. Don’t even talk to me about it. Not going to do it.’ I stood my ground until Friday night when I finally said, ‘Oh my God, fine. I’ll do it.’ He wore me down.”

The Los Angeles Rams wide receiver had one of the greatest seasons in NFL history.

Why are three Rams going to Disneyland?

This is the first time three players have appeared in the commercial. All three played pivotal roles in Sunday’s win.

Kupp caught the game-winning 1-yard touchdown pass from Stafford with one minute, 25 seconds to play and was selected as the MVP for catching eight passes for 92 yards and two touchdowns, all game highs.

Stafford completed 26 of 40 passes for 283 yards and three touchdowns with two interceptions and was sacked twice. He had a 89.9 passer rating on a scale from 0 to 158.3 with a rating over 100 considered superior. Stafford became the third quarterback to win a Super Bowl in his first year with a team, joining Trent Dilfer of the Baltimore Ravens in Super Bowl XXXV in 2001 and Tom Brady of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Super Bowl LV in 2021.

Donald made two of the Rams' record-tying seven sacks and pressured Bengals' quarterback Joe Burrow into throwing an incomplete pass on fourth-and-1 from the Rams' 49-yard line with 39 seconds left to seal the victory which gave Los Angeles its first NFL championship since the 1983 season and third all-time.

Donald is the third defensive player to be in the commercial, joining Seattle Seahawks linebacker Malcolm Smith, the MVP of Super Bowl XLVIII in 2014 and New England cornerback Malcolm Butler who made a goal line interception in the final seconds of Super Bowl XLIX in 2015 to preserve the Patriots' lead.

City News Service contributed to this report.

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