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Rams Coach Now Blames Embarrassing Super Bowl Loss on Being Too Prepared

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Many teams lose games because they are underprepared, but the Los Angeles Rams had the opposite problem in Super Bowl LIII, according to their coach.

In an interview with Sports Illustrated, Sean McVay said his team lost to the New England Patriots in part because they were too prepared.

“In the back of my mind, I operated knowing I had another week,” McVay told SI’s Andy Benoit about getting ready for the Super Bowl, which the Patriots won 13-3. “That urgency to completely finalize the gameplan wasn’t quite there, and that led to me watching so much film that you can almost water down your thought process.”

He said that “you have so much time that you can over-prepare and get away from some of the things that helped you get there.

“I watched every game from New England’s season. You see stuff that worked in, say, Week 3, but you forget about the amount of stuff that’s taken place since Week 3. You can watch so much film that you lose perspective. You have 18 games of film you can pore over. And then I even watched the Philly and Atlanta Super Bowls closely.”

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The Rams came into the game with one of the most high-powered offenses in the league. They averaged 32.9 points and 421.1 yards per game in the regular season, both of which were second only to the Kansas City Chiefs.

But in the Super Bowl, McVay’s team managed only three points, 260 total yards and 14 first downs.

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You might assume from the results the Rams didn’t spend enough time game-planning for Pats’ defense, which was good but not great during the regular season. New England gave up 359.1 yards per game (21st in the NFL) but only 20.3 points per game (seventh in the league).

The Rams knew, however, that they would have their hands full with Tom Brady and company.

“Brady’s so good it’s scary,” LA defensive coordinator Wade Phillips told SI. “He knows what you’re in most of the time, knows where the matchup is, man or zone. We tried to switch it up, and that’s about the only chance you have. … You know, I’m still disappointed [about this game]. It’s hard for me to say we played great, we didn’t play great enough to win.”

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McVay credited Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels with calling a good game.

“Josh McDaniels had a real feel for that game’s flow and how to play that game to try to win it,” McVay said. “I really respected his feel for the game, watching him call it and adjust.”

If he does get back to the Super Bowl, McVay, who is just 33, said he will appreciate it more.

“I think there’s a lot to be said for the journey, and I appreciated what the season had entailed,” he said. “But I could have appreciated the week and entirety of the event more. I kept myself kind of isolated because I didn’t want any distraction.”

McVay told SI he also will change the way he prepares. He’ll be ready — but not too ready.

“But you have to give the Patriots credit, they were their best when their best was demanded. And personally, I wasn’t good enough,” he said. “I have to do a better job.”

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Dave is a lifelong sports fan who has been writing for The Wildcard since 2017. He has been a writer for more than 20 years for a variety of publications.
Dave has been writing about sports for The Wildcard since 2017. He's been a reporter and editor for over 20 years, covering everything from sports to financial news. In addition to writing for The Wildcard, Dave has covered mutual funds for Pensions and Investments, meetings and conventions, money market funds, personal finance, associations, and he currently covers financial regulations and the energy sector for Macallan Communications. He has won awards for both news and sports reporting.
Location
Massachusetts
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