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A few weeks ago star defensive back Trumaine Johnson was asked to name one of the two C’s that define their culture. You get these corners, they play off just in no man’s land on you, when you get into a reduced split. That’s great in live action but counterproductive in practice when you’re trying to develop your second-year quarterback. But our communication, getting in and out of the huddle, we’ve got to be better with that. In a few minutes the entire offensive staff will watch and analyze it together. In the offensive meeting room, Mc Vay sits at the head of a long table, opposite the projector screen. “They’re lined up offsides,” Mc Vay says, pausing to examine the defensive line before the snap. “He’s not threatening anybody vertical on this play.” Woods already knows this. Does he need to let the players grow under fire a bit more? “Good progression by Todd, man,” Mc Vay says, watching Gurley make a blitz pickup from his running back position. “This is where my blood really boiled,” Mc Vay says. The defense, which had been cocky and believed it won the scrimmage 3-0, will learn that the score had actually been 2-1. (Mc Vay, being so offense-minded, constantly worries about playing favorites.) And from that, the next scrimmage will be infused with competitive energy. Mc Vay broaches an interesting topic with Peete and Kromer: Gurley needs to keep his shoulders squared downfield when running “duo,” which is an inside zone run with two double-team blocks. “That’s why I think Matt Forte was so good for you guys in Chicago,” Mc Vay says to Kromer, who was the Bears’ offensive coordinator under Marc Trestman. Those guys are patient • ROBERT SALEH, FROM 9/11 TO THE NINERS: Robert Klemko on San Francisco’s new defensive coordinator * * * p.m. After finishing some miscellaneous office work, he heads over to the trainers room to meet with Reggie Scott. Scott also advises that the 35-year-old Whitworth and 30-year-old free-agent defensive end Connor Barwin should have their practice reps reduced. Both veterans will hate it, but you have to save them from themselves. But first, a quick shower in the one-man locker room at the back of his office. We can definitely clean up a couple of those routes—you can run them better—but don’t let that take away from all the good stuff that you’ve been doing, man.” Mc Vay and Woods spend a few minutes discussing the specifics of those routes.With abrupt certainty that only a corner can conjure, Johnson said commitment. “But he was so confident about it,” Mc Vay later recounts for Veronica and friends, “that I paused and thought, ‘son of a gun, am • 24 HOURS WITH ... That’s when the huddle call is a run but Goff has the option to throw a quick slant depending on the defense. We get it to you, right through that outside ’backer who’s up on the line of scrimmage. Various staffers flow in and out, many catching snippets of Mc Vay’s concerns. The offense got shorted some yards by unfavorable spots of the ball. Most maddening of all: The film reveals that defensive linemen consistently lined up offside. The other eight chairs are filled by assistant coaches. Mc Vay calls out every play beforehand, often analyzing from memory what’s about to happen. He’s known as a “remote tyrant”—someone who rewinds plays again and again. “No shit,” deadpans offensive line coach Aaron Kromer. He honestly doesn’t know and asks the room what they think. In the offensive meetings earlier, Gurley had worn an affable, subtly bemused smile, making you wonder if his mind wasn’t drifting toward topics a little more entertaining than the protection rules that were up on the whiteboard. The film shows the second-team offense lining up incorrectly just before Mc Vay called off their drive in the scrimmage. In the formation they’re watching now, Gurley knows the run will often bounce outside. But if he stays square, defenders will react differently and, long story short, it’ll create better blocking angles for when the ball does bounce outside. “He was patient to the line, and he could jump cut with his shoulders square. Before he goes, Mc Vay gets instructions for healing his injured quad: light running over the next four days, but only on a treadmill, where he can regulate his speed. Usually Mc Vay does this right after practice, before the coaches watch the day’s film. “But the main reason I was calling is because I could name about 25 good things you’ve done over last week and dating back to the minicamp, too. “Hey those cushions on the patio chairs—how are they at absorbing moisture? Mc Vay winds his black BMW 750i through nearly two miles of his Encino Hills neighborhood to the freeway. ADAM SCHEFTER: Behind the scenes with the NFL’s top newsbreaker * * * a.m. There’s a large oak L-shaped desk and cabinet, and four screens: two computer monitors, a laptop and a large flat-screen, which displays the contents of Mc Vay’s main computer.They go over which plays to install today and which to hold until next week. (The Rams track this data with a GPS program.) Mc Vay guesses wide receiver Mike Thomas, and he’s correct.12, he planned on returning to his Reston, Va., townhouse to gather his things. So Veronica and a few friends took care of clearing the townhouse, and it sold in a day. He’s wearing his usual: shorts, t-shirt and running shoes. Mc Vay and La Fleur have been friends since 2011, when they worked together on Washington’s staff. “I think it’s so hit-or-miss for a running back to block this defender when he’s offset,” Mc Vay says, pointing to an example on the video. If you do have the running back aligned there, you have to have other plays off of that.” The discussion continues for several minutes. Mc Vay also solicits his “Not at all,” Mc Vay says. Now it’s Rams head trainer Reggie Scott who drops by. Mc Vay asks him which player so far has run the most total yards in OTAs. Mc Vay, drinking black coffee and a sparkling water (Rams general manager Les Snead got him on it), is at his desk watching clips of plays from Atlanta and Washington that he’ll be installing today for his young Rams offense. Practice is from noon to , but players will arrive for meetings at a.m.
“Here we’d tell the F receiver on this stick route to tight-turn it.” The video shows a Washington receiver catching a short pass and turning upfield towards the end zone. ” Then he turns his attention to his young quarterback. You’re wired to separate, and you’ve done it consistently. Veronica has just gotten back from the gym and isn’t sure that she’s presentable enough to be seen by The MMQB’s cameras, which have followed Mc Vay inside. Rams assistant linebackers coach Chris Shula (son of Dave, nephew of Mike, grandson of Don) comes downstairs.
Mc Vay lives here with his girlfriend, Veronica, who moved with him from Virginia. Distractions keep popping up, and he winds up barely finishing half.
After Mc Vay, the former offensive coordinator in Washington, got the Rams job on Jan. It’s all Mc Vay will consume for the next eight hours. Offensive coordinator Matt La Fleur pops into the office. “Well, I’m asking your opinion here, too.” “Yeah, I think it just depends.
Mc Vay stands in the back alongside cornerbacks coach Aubrey Pleasant. “Today we’re going to be exclusively in ‘11’ personnel (one back, one tight end), working against pressures.” Mc Vay calls on players at random throughout the meeting. Nothing is worse than the head coach catching your daydream in front of the entire room. “Because that’s the only play [available] when he screws you. At the end of a third-down play that, in an actual game, would have surely been measured by the chain gang, he yells “Two’s are off!
In a few minutes, Pleasant and safeties coach Ejiro Evero will take over, addressing the defensive backs. From quarterback Jared Goff to the quality control assistants, many have learned the hard way to pay undivided attention. “When we do this, in routes on air, come on man, you’re too on top of this, be three yards inside the numbers, right? Because when you stay on that side, that safety’s going to key over the top.” Mc Vay keeps Mannion on the field for the next snap. [i.e., Second team, leave the field.] Point to the defense! The offense had indeed gained three first downs on one of its drives.