The Los Angeles Rams sit pretty atop the NFC West with a 9-3 record. Although they aren’t the best in football, head Coach Sean McVay deserves plenty of praise.
There are some great candidates for NFL Coach of the Year. Heck, there still is a chance that the wheels fall off of the Los Angeles Rams‘ bus and they miss the playoffs altogether. With some tough games ahead of them, the Rams may go from challenging for home-field advantage to barely making a Wild Card spot.
Los Angeles has the beautiful task of taking on the 10-2 Philadelphia Eagles following their first loss since September. However, the same unstoppable Eagles now look like a facade. Many are realizing that they have not beaten any formidable competition. The Rams could be the nail in the coffin to end the Eagles’ hype.
Or they could lose an offensive showcase, thus making the Eagles the best team in football once more. Following that challenge, the Rams have the pleasure of facing the Seahawks in Seattle. Seattle won their last contest, 16-10. LA then has the Titans and 49ers to end the season.
Los Angeles can very well lose three of those games and finish as a wildcard at 10-6. However, they also possess the moxie to win out and finish with their first 13+ win season since 2001.
Ultimately, this four-game slate will determine the NFL Coach of the Year. If the Rams win out, it is Sean McVay. If they split, it is Mike Zimmer. Perhaps the Eagles win out and it is Doug Pederson. Let’s not forget Bill Belichick and Mike Tomlin.
However, right now, McVay is the easy front-runner.
What McVay (alongside some significant help from Wade Phillips) has done with this Rams team is incredible. This is the same Rams team that finished last season with a 1-11 stretch for a 4-12 record. The same Rams organization that has not posted a record above .500 since 2003.
People were calling Jared Goff a bust last season. Now, he has over 3,100 passing yards through 12 games and has the seventh-best passer rating for quarterbacks with at least 300 attempts.
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Todd Gurley has bounced back from his sophomore slump. Gurley has 1,502 yards from scrimmage (939 rushing, 563 receiving) and 11 combined touchdowns. The defense has done its job and additions such as Cooper Kupp, Sammy Watkins and Robert Woods have sparked the offense.
McVay is the youngest head coach in NFL history yet he is leading this young Rams team into the promise land. This is the same guy that made Kirk Cousins look like an elite quarterback. Now, McVay is making the Los Angeles Rams look like an elite franchise.
Let’s say the Rams win three of their last four and finish with a 12-4 record. That is an eight-game turnaround. Even in the Eagles finish 14-2, that is only a seven-game turnaround. Just like Jason Garrett last season, Sean McVay’s quick turnaround for this Rams team should not go unnoticed.
The last time a Rams coach won Coach of the Year was in 1999. Dick Vermeil led the team to a 13-3 record after going 4-12 the season before. The Rams very well could win out and repeat those results. Then, perhaps Los Angeles can repeat the magic of 1999 and rally to win the Super Bowl.