The Los Angeles Rams unveiled the team’s savior Friday as they formally introduced 30-year-old Sean McVay as their coach, the youngest in the modern history of the NFL.
He wasted no time vowing to build a winning franchise.
“On offense and defense, what you can expect from us is we’re going to be attacking on both sides of the football, but we’re also going to be fundamentally sound,” McVay said. “Our first priority is going to be to assemble a great coaching staff. … We’re looking for leaders, teachers and motivators of men to help develop our players and help them reach their highest potential.
… It’s an exciting time to be an L.A. Ram, and we can’t wait to go to work, roll our sleeves up and figure out a way to consistently give this fan base and this great city of L.A. a winner and a team that they can be proud of week in and week out.”
The Rams announced McVay’s hiring Thursday to replace Jeff Fisher, who was fired Dec. 12, one day after a 42-14 loss to the Atlanta Falcons dropped the team’s record to 4-9.
The Rams lost all three games under interim coach John Fassel, ending the season with a 4-12 record, their worst since 2011, and a seven-game losing streak.
McVay spent the past three seasons as the Washington Redskins offensive coordinator. Washington was second in the NFL in passing yards per game (297.4), passing yards per play (7.84) and yards per play (6.4) in 2016.
The team averaged more than 400 yards per game and set a team record with 6,454 yards, ending the regular season as the NFL’s third-ranked offense. Washington was 8-7-1, with a 19-10 loss to the New York Giants in its final game costing it a playoff berth.
“The accomplishments and success that he has rendered in less than a decade in our league are remarkable,” Rams owner Stan Kroenke said. “I am confident in his vision to make this team a consistent winner and to ultimately bring a Super Bowl title home to Los Angeles.”
McVay joins a team that has had 10 consecutive losing seasons, last made the playoffs in 2004, when it was 8-8, and hasn’t had a winning record since 2003.
McVay began his NFL career in 2008 as an offensive assistant with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a season after completing his college playing career as a receiver for Ohio’s Miami University.
When Buccaneers coach Jon Gruden was fired following a 9-7 season and a new coaching staff was brought in, McVay became the tight ends coach of the Florida Tuskers of the now-defunct United Football League.
McVay returned to the NFL in 2010 as an offensive assistant with Washington. He was the team’s tight ends coach from 2011-13.
Former Washington tight end Chris Cooley tweeted that McVay’s hiring was “going to be the start of an awesome run.”
“I’m so proud of you buddy,” Cooley tweeted.
Washington third-string quarterback Nate Sudfeld tweeted that the “Rams got a good one” in McVay.
McVay is a grandson of John McVay, the New York Giants coach from 1976- 78 and an executive with the San Francisco 49ers from 1979-95 when the team won five Super Bowls.
McVay will turn 31 on Jan. 24. The NFL’s modern era is considered to have begun in 1933 when the league was split into two divisions and a championship game was played.
The previous youngest coach was Lane Kiffin, who was 31 years and eight months old when he was signed to coach the Oakland Raiders in 2007.
McVay insisted that the Rams will be a team of great character.
“Our character will be the foundation and it will be the glue that holds us together as an organization,” he said. “We’re going to be committed to our process, and we’re going to be committed to a standard of performance. And those things are going to be focused on daily improvement and daily excellence. And that’s what’s going to help guide us on our journey to try to achieve a world championship and bring it to this great city of Los Angeles.
… A Ram for us — they’re going to be mentally and physically tough players that are smart and love to compete. … In order to be able to put out that product that our fans deserve, that we want to see that’s going to give us a chance to win games week in and week out, we’ve got to be committed to that process and that standard of performance.”
—City News Service
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