Thursday, March 4, 2021

Sean McVay vs. Matt LaFleur: In the battle for the two most successful young coaches in the NFL

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Sean McVay and Matt LaFleur are two of the most successful coaches in the NFL. They are also two of the youngest.

Their paths cross when the Rams face the Packers at 3:30 p.m. ET Saturday on Fox. McVay and LaFleur have a coaching tie that dates back to their time together on the Rams staff. It’s a testament to the success of the youth movement among NFL coaches.

Sporting News takes a closer look at McVay, LaFleur and a coaching game that could be part of the NFC’s playoff picture for years to come.

MORE: Highest Paid NFL Coaches in 2020

Who is the youngest coach in the NFL?

McVay, 34, is the youngest active coach in the NFL. There are nine coaches in the NFL who are 42 years of age or under. LaFleur, 41, is the sixth-youngest coach in the league as of January 16, 2021. Here’s a look at the youngest coaches in the NFL:

LAST NAME DATE OF BIRTH AGE
Sean McVay, Aries 01/24/86 34
Zac Taylor, Bengals 05/10/83 37
Kevin Stefanski, Browns 05/08/82 38
Brian Flores, dolphins 02/24/81 39
Joe Judge, Giants 12/31/81 39
Matt LaFleur, Packers 11/3/79 41
Kyle Shanahan, 49ers 12/14/79 41
Kliff Kingsbury, Cardinals 8/9/79 41
Matt Nagy, bear 04/24/78 42

Sean McVay’s coaching record

McVay returned to the Rams in 2017. In four seasons, he was 43-21 in the regular season and 3-2 in the playoffs. Los Angeles has the fifth-best NFL record in that streak behind New Orleans (52-18), Kansas City (52-18), New England (48-23) and Baltimore (45-22).

In 2018, McVay led the Rams to a spot at Super Bowl XLIII, where Los Angeles lost 13-3 to New England.

The Rams missed the playoffs last season, but have finished 10-6 this year behind the league’s best defense. Los Angeles beat Seattle 30-20 in the NFC Wild Card round. Aaron Donald is a candidate for the NFL Defensive Player of the Year honors.

Matt LaFleur Coaching Review

LaFleur took over the Packers in 2019. In two seasons, is 26-6 in the regular season and 1-1 in the playoffs. Green Bay has the second-best NFL record in that streak behind Kansas City (29-6).

The Packers made it into the NFC Championship game last season before losing 37-20 to the San Francisco 49ers.

Green Bay has had the best record in the NFC this season at 13-3. The Packers are the top seed in the conference and quarterback Aaron Rodgers is a top contender for the NFL MVP award.

LaFleur was assistant to McVay

LaFleur served as offensive coordinator for the Rams under McVay in 2017. The Rams finished 10-6 that season before losing 26-13 to Atlanta in the NFC wildcard round.

The Rams have led the NFL with 29.9 points per game and are 10th with 361.5 yards per game this season. LaFleur left to become Tennessee’s offensive coordinator for a season before taking on the head coach position at Green Bay.

Force versus force match

LaFleur and McVay meet for the first time in a power-on-force match.

The Packers lead the NFL with 31.8 points per game, and Rodgers enjoyed a second year in LaFleur’s offensive system. Rodgers finished with 4,299 passing yards, 48 ​​touchdowns and five interceptions. Davante Adams added 115 catches for 1,374 yards and 18 touchdowns.

The Rams led the NFL with a defense that allowed just 18.5 points per game. Donald had 13.5 sacks this season and Jalen Ramsey is one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL. McVay has said Jared Goff, who underwent thumb surgery after losing to Seattle in Week 16, will remain the starting quarterback.



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