We Not Me.
That’s the mantra that accompanied Los Angeles Rams’ head coach Sean McVay upon being hired in 2017. It hoped to quickly instill a sense of teamwork — a sense of selflessness.
It also meant bringing in talent from outside the organization in free agency that exemplified these traits - such as Andrew Whitworth and Connor Barwin - veteran players who were professionals both on and off the field.
And, despite any notion that the youngest head coach in NFL history couldn’t get the job done, it worked. The Rams went 11-5 in 2017, became NFC West Champions, and have set themselves up for even larger expectations in the coming year.
And they’ve not let anyone down thus far, given their aggressiveness in free agency. Aside from (surprisingly) casting off a few Fisher era players, Les Snead & Co. have brought in big name players like Aqib Talib, Marcus Peters, and now, Ndamukong Suh. They’re not just big names, they’re big personalities.
And, rightfully so, folks are - maybe not questioning - but noticing that in doing so, McVay too will have to step up his game in 2018.
So much respect for Sean McVay and what he has done in a short amount of time w/#Rams. Called it early last summer. BUT...I have my concerns about all they are doing this offseason. McVay will need to be an even better leader in ‘18.— Louis Riddick (@LRiddickESPN) March 27, 2018
It’s a fair assessment from Riddick. On-field antics and in-the-locker room transgressions cannot become a Rams’ storyline this season. We Not Me must find a way to prevail. And that ultimately lies squarely on the shoulders of the head coach.
But he’s not alone in that. And he knows it.
If you don’t know by now, Sean McVay has a silver tongue. He wooed the Rams to an extent during his interview last year that they essentially shut down the process immediately, because they knew they had their guy. Ndamukong Suh was scheduled to meet with the Raiders following the Rams. That didn’t happen...because it didn’t need to. And any time you’ve ever seen a Sean McVay presser - whether it’s following a win or a loss - he’s got the answers. If they win, the players did their job and kudos to them. If they lose, he didn’t put them in a position to do so, and he’s going to be better the next week.
On Tuesday morning, sitting at a round table, fielding rapid-fire questions from the media at the Coaches breakfast in Orlando, McVay once again put his eloquence on display. McVay, as Stuart Scott would say, is “as cool as the other side of the pillow.”
Asked #Rams coach Sean McVay about the talent/personality/ego on defense. Says they’re all guys who love football. “I think the defensive coordinator has more swag than all of them, so we’re in good shape.”— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) March 27, 2018
So if you were concerned about how McVay plans on handling the big personalities they’ve brought in on defense this offseason, fret not. He’s got one of the best to ever do it handling that matter.