As Sean McVay enters marriage, will he be wed to Rams long?

It’s been quite a year for Sean McVay.

In February, the Rams coach ended a boom-or-bust season by leading the team to victory in Super Bowl LVI at SoFi Stadium — and then turned down broadcasts of Overtures, which reportedly earned him $10 million annually had.

A few weeks later, after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, he and his fiancé, Veronika Khomyn, began tackling the challenges faced by their family members in their war-torn homeland.

In April, McVay bought and moved into a $14 million home in Hidden Hills. In May, he wore aviators and starred in a commercial for the Tom Cruise sequel, Top Gun: Maverick.

McVay, 36, met another personal milestone on Saturday when he married Khomyn.

What’s easier for McVay: creating a game plan for the Super Bowl? Or trim a wedding invitation list?

“Definitely the first,” McVay said after practice on Wednesday. “Because I have a boss who can overrule me on the second.”

But how long will McVay, who was just 30 when he was hired in 2017, be married to the Rams?

Before a new season begins in September, the Rams are expected to announce that McVay has signed an extension that will make him one of the highest-paid coaches in the NFL.

McVay reportedly earned about $8.5 million last season. New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick reportedly earned more than $12 million while also serving as general manager. Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll reportedly made $11 million.

McVay’s regular-season record is 55-26, and the Rams reached the Super Bowl twice in his five seasons.

Former Baltimore Colts and Miami Dolphins coach Don Shula is the NFL’s all-time winning leader. According to profootballreference.com, he amassed 328 regular-season wins and won two Super Bowls in 33 seasons before retiring after the 1995 season at the age of 65.

George Halas won 318 games and six NFL championships in 40 seasons with the Chicago Bears. He retired in 1967 at the age of 72. Belichick, 70, has 290 wins and six Super Bowl titles in 27 seasons, including his first five with the Cleveland Browns.

Former Dallas Cowboys coach Tom Landry won 250 games and two Super Bowls in 29 seasons before retiring after the 1988 season at the age of 64. Andy Reid, 64, has won 233 games and a Super Bowl in 23 seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs.

Carroll, 70, has won 152 games in 15 seasons with the New York Jets, Patriots and Seahawks. He coached USC for nine seasons before joining the Seahawks in 2010 and leading them to a Super Bowl title in the 2013 season.

Coach Sean McVay holds the Lombardi Trophy after the Rams won Super Bowl LVI.

Coach Sean McVay holds the Lombardi Trophy after the Rams won Super Bowl LVI.

(Brian van der Brug/Los Angeles Times)

“If you said, ‘Do I have a desire to try to chase victories like Belichick or Don Shula?’ – I really don’t.”

– Rams coach Sean McVay on his longevity in the NFL

McVay has averaged 11 wins per season. At this rate, he would need to practice 25 more seasons to match Shula’s record.

“If you said, ‘Do I have a desire to try to chase victories like Belichick or Don Shula?’ — I really don’t,” McVay said in an interview after the NFL’s owners’ meetings in March.

What about potential induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame?

“Hell yeah,” McVay said, adding, “but when you said, ‘Who’s the greatest of all time or the greatest of all time in terms of longevity … that’s never been something that really appealed to me.”

Questions began about McVay’s potential longevity as an NFL coach in February, a few days before the Super Bowl, when McVay hinted he might not be in it for the long haul.

During a press conference, he paced back and forth when asked if he could see himself coaching into his 60s, a la Belichick.

“No chance,” he said at first. “I love it. But if I do it to 60, I won’t make it.”

A reporter then asked if McVay, a recognized football junkie, could really do without collecting players and coaches?

“I love this so much, it’s such a passion,” he said. “But I also know that from some of my closest friends, whether they’re coaches or even some of our players.”

It’s a balancing act, he conceded.

“I’m getting married this summer,” he said. “Want to have a family.”

Speculation about McVay’s future mounted immediately after the Super Bowl win over the Cincinnati Bengals, a win that helped McVay ease the pain Belichick felt while coaching him in Super Bowl LIII.

When asked the next morning by Times columnist Dylan Hernandez if he would return to coach the Rams this season, McVay was noncommittal.

“We’ll see,” he said.

Amid the Rams’ victory parade celebrations two days later, McVay and star defenseman Aaron Donald tried to quell rumors that they might not return to the Rams.

From left, Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp, Matthew Stafford and coach Sean McVay celebrate during the Rams parade.

From left, Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp, Matthew Stafford and coach Sean McVay celebrate during the Rams Victory Day Parade in Los Angeles.

(Christina House / Los Angeles Times)

“I’m really interested in doing that. Now I also know that the things I love most are the things you would miss in coaching. But there’s a lot… I won’t miss.”

– Sean McVay, with potential to become a post-NFL broadcaster

“Part of me was like, ‘Man, there’s never going to be a better time to step down,'” McVay said a month later after the owners’ meetings. “But when you really think about all the people that came out of it, I wouldn’t have had the guts to leave behind a lot of people I love and care about, even if there had been one [lot of] financial rewards and good things that would have come with it.”

Carroll understood.

“It’s a real grind and the stress and opportunity to stay at the top is so exhilarating,” he said. “I know that very well. It can wear you down, wear you down, so I completely understand that.”

McVay was flattered at the possibility of making the switch to broadcasting — and didn’t rule it out in the future. Andrew Marchand of the New York Post reported after the Super Bowl that ESPN, Fox and Amazon Prime Video were interested in McVay.

McVay watched mentor Jon Gruden transition from coaching to broadcasting with phenomenal success.

After Gruden was fired by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers following the 2008 season – McVay’s first in the NFL – Gruden, then 45, began a nine-year career as an analyst on Monday Night Football and became a crossover entertainment personality.

Gruden, who coached 11 seasons in the NFL with the Raiders and Buccaneers, returned to the league as Raiders coach in 2018 and reportedly signed a 10-year, $100 million contract, which was then the richest in the NFL .

Now, former New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton is reportedly set to join Fox as a studio analyst, though it’s seen as a hold until he returns to coaching. Jimmy Johnson, Bill Cowher and Tony Dungy are other Super Bowl champion coaches who work in broadcasting. And analysts like Tony Romo and Troy Aikman are beneficiaries of skyrocketing pay for top analyst talent.

McVay has enjoyed his limited television work.

“It’s not like I’m just doing it to stay engaged — I’m really interested in doing that,” he said. “Now I also know that the things I love most are the things you would miss in coaching. But there are many [stuff] that I won’t miss.”

McVay doesn’t want to give up raising and enjoying a family.

In recent months, he has repeatedly praised Khomyn for the grace and strength with which she handled the situation in Ukraine.

Veronika Khomyn (left) and Sean McVay arrive at the 27th Annual Critics Choice Awards in March.

Veronika Khomyn (left) and Sean McVay arrive at the 27th Annual Critics Choice Awards in March. They are getting married this month.

(Jordan Strauss / Jordan Strauss/invision/ap)

McVay said before the Super Bowl that he “always dreamed of being a father” and being able to spend time with his wife and kids.

Finding a balance is the challenge for a coach who said his “safe space” is when he’s on the pitch or in briefing rooms with players and coaches.

“I’ve thought about it enough to know myself — like that balance thing in the season, that’s just never going to happen to me,” he said after the owners’ meetings. “I feel like I’m cheating the game and cheating in a way that I know I have the working capacity. … And so it’s a love/hate thing.”

Bengals coach Zac Taylor, 39, worked under McVay for two seasons with the Rams. Taylor, who is married with four children, said that as an NFL coach, “you go away for seven months, and then what my wife likes to call it, you have the comeback phase.”

But Taylor said the “work-life balance” with family can be managed so coaches don’t “miss those moments” with kids.

“Luckily I’m in Cincinnati,” he said, “12 minutes from my house.”

Reid, after almost a quarter-century as a head coach, said one secret to coaching longevity in the NFL is working with good players, coaches, and personal responsibility.

“Owners I’ve worked for have both been phenomenal, so they made it as easy as possible for me,” he said. “So I do what I love to do.”

Carroll said that McVay — who he called “a great ball coach” — is entering what he called “the best life yet” off the field, though it begins as an NFL coach “in the middle of it all.”

“But it’s always in the middle,” Carroll said. “Well, I wish him the best.”

Then he stopped.

“If he wants to resign,” the NFC West rival added with a laugh, “that’s fine with me.”

https://www.latimes.com/sports/rams/story/2022-06-03/sean-mcvay-future-rams-marriage As Sean McVay enters marriage, will he be wed to Rams long?

Emma Bowman

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