Sean McVay was a grand slam hire for the Los Angeles Rams

Shutdown Corner

Over the years, we could count on a few things in the NFL.

Aaron Rodgers would make incredible plays (still going), the Cleveland Browns would be terrible (check), the New England Patriots would be dominant (well, about that … ) and the St. Louis or Los Angeles Rams would have an awful offense.

Don’t look now, but a coaching change has delivered the Rams one of the NFL’s best offenses. Seriously.

The Rams, who scored more than 40 points in each of their first two wins, put up only 35 against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday. That was enough as the Rams went into Dallas and pulled off a very nice 35-30 upset. With that, the Rams improved to 3-1 and maintained first place in the NFC West.


Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay had led his team to an unexpected 3-1 start. (AP)
Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay had led his team to an unexpected 3-1 start. (AP)

The 2017 Rams, at least to this point, are the best example of how much coaching matters in the NFL since Andy Reid took over the Kansas City Chiefs in 2013 and took a 2-14 team and made them an 11-5 playoff team. Everyone knew McVay, the youngest coach in modern NFL history, couldn’t be worse than Jeff Fisher. But nobody figured on him being this much of an upgrade.

Jared Goff looks like a franchise quarterback after a lost rookie season. That’s coaching. Goff had 255 yards and two touchdowns on Sunday. Todd Gurley II, who had 215 total yards Sunday, has resurrected his career after an alarmingly bad sophomore season. Again, coaching. If you strip away the names and recent history and look just at what we’ve seen through four weeks, the Rams are the best team in the NFC West.

The Rams took a chance on McVay. He had respect for his football acumen as the offensive coordinator of the Washington Redskins, but it was a little risky to hire a 31-year-old head coach. It looks like a genius move now. The Rams have a fantastic head coach, based on everything we’ve seen so far, and he’s only 31. He has plenty of time and energy to keep improving.

The last time the Rams finished in the top 20 in points or yards was 2006. That’s not a misprint. The Rams fielding a boring, uncreative, terrible offense has been an NFL tradition for almost a decade. McVay put an end to that in a hurry.

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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