At 33, Sean McVay is set to be the youngest Super Bowl coach.
His Rams (15-3) are back in the Super Bowl for the first time since the 2002 big game against the New England Patriots (back when the Rams were in St. Louis and the Patriots were a plucky underdog standing in the way of a potential dynasty) — and for the first time as the “Los Angeles Rams” since 1980, when they fell to the Steelers.
It’s been a McVay football dynasty waiting to happen!
His grandfather, John, was the New York Giants’ head coach from 1976-78, and also a former San Francisco 49ers front office man.
His father Tim, was a former defensive back at Indiana.
Grandpa John would get the family tickets to see the Niners.
Tim said his son, Sean, his firstborn, always excelled at sports, from soccer to football.
And he just kept going.
“You know how when you play soccer as a kid and there’s one or two of the kids that are just flat-out faster than the others?” Tim told The New York Post. “Well, Sean was one of those. He’d fly in, take a header, fly in too fast, break a nose.”
Sean is so young, he played against Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman in college in 2007.
McVay was a wide receiver for the Miami University RedHawks. Edelman was a quarterback for the Kent State Golden Flashes.
“It’s very remarkable. He’s a stud,” Edelman told NBC. “He’s my age, and he’s leading an organization to a Super Bowl. It’s unbelievable, and it’s a testament to how much he knows the game, how hard he works. I love seeing it. He’s a MAC guy. You know that coach McVay and that coaching staff is going to have that team ready, and we’re going to have to take advantage of the preparation time that we have and get ready, too.”
Former Miami coach Shane Montgomery told The Washington Post that McVay, who played quarterback in high school and wide receiver in college, “understood everything” about football.
“He understood the whole offense, and he was a great leader,” Montgomery said.
Within a few years, he was working for then-Washington Redskins' head coach Mike Shanahan.
“He'd ask questions at a young age that most people wouldn't ask,” Shanahan said. “He wanted to know the whys behind everything.”
Sean is the youngest person to become a head coach in the NFL since 1938, when Art “Pappy” Lewis of the Cleveland Rams became a head coach at 27.
If Los Angeles beats New England on Sunday, McVay will become the youngest coach to win a Super Bowl. Bill Belichick can become the oldest to win one at age 66.
The Patriots (13-5) are back for the third straight time — they lost to Philly last year — the fourth in five seasons and the ninth since Belichick got the New England dynasty on track in the 2002 win over St. Louis.
McVay has spent the past two seasons heralding the coming of a new age of football — one in which McVay’s reimagined offense has dealt a blow to the old, increasingly dated adage that teams ultimately must win championships with defense. The Rams have cracked 30 points in 13 of their 18 games this season. A generation ago, that would’ve been novel; now, it’s normal.
But to officially usher the NFL into a new era, the Rams will have to get past New England in Atlanta, set for Sunday— exactly 17 years to the date of the last Super Bowl showdown.
Incidentally, McVay’s quarterback, Jared Goff, was 7 years old when Tom Brady beat the Rams to win his first Super Bowl in early 2002.
Sunday shall be a Super Bowl rematch of sorts that pits the NFL’s past against its future.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.