NFL Coaching Jobs…Great–Not So Good”
Sean McVay is this year’s Flavor of the Month as a head coach.
He is highly regarded, highly popular, and highly sought after now.
A week after winning the Super Bowl., there are more questions than answers about his future, especially since he made comments during Super Bowl week that he wanted to find a balance in his life.
In essence, working 7-days a week and spending 90-hours a week on being a head coach, a creative genius, a players confidante, and dealing with the media is overwhelming.
McVay, whose grandfather John McVay was a legendary GM of the NY Giants and a college coach, has accomplished so much in such a short time.
The fast track guy, moving thru the coaching ranks, to be a coordinator and a year later a head coach, and now five years of excellence. Some track record.
He has gone (55-26) in the regular season with the Rams, adding on an impressive (7-3) record in the post season. The Rams have 3-first place finishes in his five seasons, and have been to the Super Bowl twice, losing to the Patriots and winning the last second thriller against the Bengals.
This (62-29) record is overwhelming considering what he inherited from prior ownership. He’s been linked with a bold GM in Les Snead and a free wheeling rich owner in Stan Kroenke, whose spending sprees are legendary.
Now within a week, of the Super Bowl celebration, rumors are everywhere McVay would consider stepping away from the grind, to go to TV. Reports on Monday that one of the networks, maybe Fox, would offer him 18M per year to become their lead analyst. CBS pays Tony Romo (17.5M) per fall, so this makes sense.
Why leave a franchise that has a star QB, superstar WRs, a legendary defense? Why exit when you could be back in the Super Bowl this time next year with Matthew Stafford, Cooper Kupp, Odell Beckham, Aaron Donald and more?
Hard to believe he would exit now, but maybe he’s made 40M already and money is not the object, but enjoyment in the next stage of his career, is more important.
Two thoughts flashed back from all my years in the NFL.
Legendary Chargers coach Bobby Ross, who led his team to the Super Bowl, told me being a head coach meant giving up peace of mind for any one moment in season, and a limited amount of time away from work in the offseason when you are supposed to get better as a team.
Ex Chiefs-Chargers coach Marty Schottenheimer, who passed away last year, won 200 games as a head coach, but was never satisfied because of post season failures. He was consumed by the job as the years went on.
The comments ring out in my mind the two made to me in private conversations.
Ross, coaching the Lions after his Chargers run, said he felt it was time to get out, not just because of health issues (blood clots), but also because of the demand to win, the pressure he put on himself, and the need to win. His Lions had upset the Minnesota Vikings on a Sunday, and he could not feel any long term joy. He said 15-minutes after he boarded a plane returning to Detroit, he started to worry and think how the Lions would fare the next weekend against Green Bay. Less than 15 minutes into that flight, he was worrying about the next game plane, the mismatches, the offense, the defense.. No time ever to enjoy the win. It was time to leave the NFL.
Schottenheimer was more blunt, about the non stop pressures and the toll it takes. The game overwhelms you, consumes you, and then spits you out when you are done. It changes your life, your relationships, and seldom do you walk away healthy. He was fired by AJ Smith after a (14-2) season, and his career was over just like that.
So wondering why McVay would consider changing lifestyles, you find out it’s more than wins and losses, fame or money. It may be about another form of enjoyment in life and your long term health.
Stay tuned to see if McVay shows up on your TV next year or back on the sidelines. Winning does not necessarily mean surviving in the NFL.