Sean McVay regrets not having a better contingency plan in Super Bowl

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During a Thursday appearance on PFT Live, Rams head coach Sean McVay joked that he’s gone from “boy wonder” to “boy blunder” as a result of the team’s 13-3 loss to the Patriots in Super Bowl LIII and said there are a lot of things that he’d like to do over about that game in Atlanta.

One of the chief things he talked about during the show was having a “better contingency plan” in place. As has been well discussed, the Patriots defensive threw different looks at the Rams than most were expecting and McVay lamented his inability to prepare the team’s players for such a turn of events.

McVay cited the fifth play of the game as a prime example. It was a passing play against quarters coverage that saw Brandin Cooks “leaning out” into an area vacated by the safety in similar fashion to his near-touchdown in the second half. Jason McCourty broke up a pass that was a touch late on the later play, but McVay said he thought the first one might have been a better look.

McVay castigated himself for not preparing Jared Goff, who threw an incompletion, for that look and said that he thinks the play could have sent the game in a different direction.

“If you’re able to hit that and make them pay, then I think it forces them to make some adjustments,” McVay said. “We never really made them pay, so they were able to play that consistent front structure, coverage structure on the normal down and distances and then they were really able to dictate it as opposed to what we wanted to do offensively.”

McVay said he felt he fell short of his goal of putting players in position to “take ownership” of their jobs against the Patriots and he’ll be working on doing a better job of that once the team gets back on the field to defend their NFC title.

34 responses to “Sean McVay regrets not having a better contingency plan in Super Bowl

  1. Sory, this one goes to the players. The offensive line was horrible and dominated by the Patriots front 7. Sometimes it’s about the players. Josh McDaniels was able to make a late adjustment because he has Tom Brady and not freaking Goff.

  2. Has little to no experience on his staff to draw from and that was evident the last part of the season, teams caught on to them offensively…

  3. Goff played poorly and McVay did nothing to adjust. They were never down big, yet gave up on the run early. It was just a really poorly coached and quarterbacked game for the Rams. Yeah, the Patriots had a smart game plan but they weren’t dominant and could have been beaten by competent QB play and coaching.

  4. A lot of things the Patriots threw at Goff was new looks, so it’s not like there was film to prepare from. You can’t prepare for every contingency as that would even be worse for young quarterbacks as they’ll be stuck in “analysis-paralysis” mode all game. Sometimes you just gotta hope talent trumps Belichick’s schemes.

    As an example, look at the difference a young Nick Foles responded to pressure versus the veteran Nick Foles in last year’s Super Bowl. Almost a completely different player.

  5. They were never the same after the regular season game vs the Saints, only beat the Saints in the NFC champ game because of an historically terrible call, and never should have been in the Super Bowl in the first place.

  6. One of the best things a coach can do is admit mistakes, even if only to himself. You can learn and get better if you recognize your mistakes. Dan Quinn never admitted or seemed to recognize Atlanta’s coaching screw-ups with a 28-3 lead in the Super Bowl. Jason Garrett has always been reluctant to admit his coaching mistakes. I would feel better rooting for a team with a coach like Sean McVay.

  7. At some point your players and particularly your quarterback have to adjust to what happens at the moment. You CANNOT prepare them for everything that could possibly happen. This game was on them on the field and you for not doing anything different during the game.

  8. I am confused, I thought McVay was anointed the greatest coach of all time by the press and pundits and that is offensive coaching skills are so overwhelming and his offensive is so revolutionary that every owner should fire their staff and hire someone who has be in proximity McVay. How could the press and pundits be wrong, this has to be fake news.

  9. TheDPR says:
    February 28, 2019 at 2:45 pm
    Goff played poorly and McVay did nothing to adjust. They were never down big, yet gave up on the run early. It was just a really poorly coached and quarterbacked game for the Rams. Yeah, the Patriots had a smart game plan but they weren’t dominant and could have been beaten by competent QB play and coaching.
    ———————————
    Umm, they gave up only 3 points and the Rams I don’t believe ever even got to the Red Zone. In the NFL in general and in a Super Bowl? Yes, that’s defensive dominance.

  10. The commentary surrounding the new looks the patriots were giving on defense are overstated. The issue resided between Goff’s ears, and lack communication he recieved past the 15 second mark from his coach. Belichick is a genius, not because of his Xs and Os skills, but rather because of his innate ability to decipher his opponents’ weaknesses. Why McVey didn’t adjust and run a more hurry up offense and force the issue with pats is the most perplexing take way for me. He got conservative at the worst time possible.

  11. sbdt says:
    February 28, 2019 at 2:53 pm
    They were never the same after the regular season game vs the Saints, only beat the Saints in the NFC champ game because of an historically terrible call, and never should have been in the Super Bowl in the first place.

    —————————————

    Interesting, considering the Rams scored 36 and 54 points the two weeks after losing at New Orleans in week 9.

    As for the rest of what you said…….YAWN

  12. “players take ownership” is code for “Goff needs to learn to read the defense himself rather than me call addjustments up to 15 seconds left on the clock. the Patriots scheme made me the sucker responding to fakery.”

  13. “Sory, this one goes to the players.”
    ____________________

    If your offensive line is being dominated and your QB getting knocked down on every play, how do you as a coach NOT throw some screen passes or try a moving pocket? If players are struggling it’s the coach’s job to try different things so they can succeed. The Rams didn’t make a single adjustment the entire game.

  14. I can’t speak for all Rams fans, but I’m sure most knew Belichick was going to out-coach McVay. The real question was whether the Rams had enough talent to overcome McVay’s and Goff’s inexperience.

    McVay will get better with experience. The question is whether Goff can figure it out once the mic goes dead.

  15. I am a Pats fan who loves reading/hearing this guy talk about football. I wish NFL media would give us more of this in-depth analysis/explanation because I find these breakdowns so interesting. I hope he is not traumatized by the superbowl, it was his second year and he could be really important for the NFL as they continue to move away from selling the violence of the sport and focusing more on the chess match and strategy aspects of the game.

    McVay is such a breathe of fresh air compared to the stuck up/tough guy act we are all used to from Bill, Gruden, Tomlin, Harbaugh or the blank face ineptitude/I dont know what went wrong look of Jim Caldwell, Jeff Fisher, Marvin Lewis, or Bill O’Brian.

  16. Plan B don’t have a plan.because if you are playing Belicheat he is sure to somehow also have a copy of your plan.

  17. We’ll see later in the year if Goff in year four takes a step forward or back, but Goff shouldn’t be too down on himself, BB has a great track record against young QB’s.

  18. only beat the Saints in the NFC champ game because of an historically terrible call, and never should have been in the Super Bowl in the first place…if only Brees hadn’t thrown that Peterman-like interception in overtime…

  19. For the most part, you can’t beat the Patriots just by having a plan. They’ll have a better plan and they’ll adapt better to what you throw at them.

    The way to beat the Pats is to do what the Eagles did. You have to put that pedal to the floor and keep it there for the full 60 minutes, you have to take it to them and disrupt them, you have to break right through the idea of “playing it safe” and attack every opportunity that arises to keep good fortune out of the hands of the Pats.

    The Rams did what everyone who’s lost to the Pats do – think they have a good enough plan that will win the game. The plan is just the starting point – you have to out-dare and out-bold the team that is not afraid to work every possible margin in a game.

  20. hence the “I was out coached” comment shortly after the conclusion of the game…
    He’ll learn and be better for it..

  21. So much for the genius offensive-minded coach. Pee Wee Herman could have probably done a better job.

  22. It’s called KARMA!!! Only reason there were even in the Super Bowl is due to the worst non call in sports history. The football gods were not going to let a team that didn’t even be in the Super Bowl win it.

  23. captainwhodat says:

    February 28, 2019 at 3:43 pm

    only beat the Saints in the NFC champ game because of an historically terrible call, and never should have been in the Super Bowl in the first place…if only Brees hadn’t thrown that Peterman-like interception in overtime…

    **********************************************************************************

    And on that play Brees had a blow to the head (another flag not thrown) plus Michael Thomas was mugged and tossed to the ground as the ball was in the air (yet another flag not thrown). Brees arm was hit and not the ball so you could have called either illegal contact or pass interference on the CB.

  24. McVay wasted a great defensive effort from his team. He and Goff had a complete meltdown on the biggest stage. I don’t think they recover from that.

  25. Shoulda-Coulda-Woulda

    I am pretty sure that Belichick, Brady, McDaniels and Flores would of countered any in game changes you made.

    The outcome would be the same = Patriots 23 Rams 13

  26. On the bright side, the Rams have the talent, coaching, and the salary cap space (despite what so many think) to make Super Bowl runs for the next 5 years +. Oh, and that incredible stadium! And the sunshine! Good times in LA.

  27. McVay is a stud. A lot of young coaches that had the early success NcVay has had would be so full of themselves and blame everyone else whenever things went wrong. Tom Brady just won his 6th super bowl. I don’t think I’d beat myself up too bad for losing to the Pat’s. 30 other teams were watching from their couch.

  28. The Pats just demonstrated why they win so much. They’re an extremely well synchronized machine and they manage all aspects of the process extremely well. The Rams weren’t prepared as well as the Pats to overcome the adversity within the game and they lost because it.

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