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NFL insider ‘uncertain’ if Sean McVay returns as Los Angeles Rams coach in 2023

Sean McVay, Los Angeles Rams

Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay contemplated retirement after the team won Super Bowl LVI on Feb. 13. Less than a year later, near the end of a disastrous season, McVay might be on the verge of walking away.

Hired in 2017, McVay quickly ascended to become one of the best head coaches in the NFL. Los Angeles improved from 4-12 to 11-5 in McVay’s first season at the helm, reaching the playoffs for the first time in 12 years.

  • Sean McVay coaching record: 59-35 in regular season, 7-3 in NFL playoffs

McVay orchestrated one of the best offenses in the NFL, first building his game plan around Todd Gurley and later Jared Goff than Matthew Stafford. Hired as a 30-year-old, he became the youngest head coach to reach the Super Bowl (33) and then set the NFL record in February as the youngest coach to win the Super Bowl as a 36-year-old, surpassing Mike Tomlin.

Through his first five seasons, McVay was on pace to become one of the all-time winningest coaches in NFL history with a shot at going after Bill Belichick’s records. However, he shot down any interest in coaching that long in June and made it clear he won’t be on the sidelines for decades to come.

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Los Angeles seemingly talked him out of retiring after winning a Super Bowl, signing him to a contract extension that made him one of the highest-paid NFL head coaches. It now appears there is a realistic shot that McVay doesn’t stick around until the end of that contract.

NFL insider Peter King wrote in Football Morning in America that everyone right now has uncertainty regarding whether or not McVay will return to Los Angeles in 2023.

Related: Los Angeles Rams caching candidates if Sean McVay retires

King isn’t the first NFL reporter to suggest McVay has been contemplating his future. Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports noted multiple times on the You Pod to Win the Game podcast that McVay envisioned Kevin O’Connell as his successor until his top assistant and close confidant left to become the Minnesota Vikings head coach.

Stepping away from football to spend more time with his family has been on McVay’s mind for more than a year and an exhaustive 2022 NFL season could be what pushes him into retirement.

Why Sean McVay might retire

NFL: Los Angeles Rams at New Orleans Saints
Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

McVay wouldn’t necessarily walk away from football entirely. He briefly talked to ESPN in 2020 about joining the Monday Night Football broadcasting booth. Two years later, McVay received a recruiting pitch from Amazon as the company tried to lure him as its lead analyst for its exclusive Thursday Night Football broadcasts.

Related: Sean McVay sheds light on Amazon pursuit

If he left the Rams to join one of the NFL’s broadcasting partners, McVay could realistically make at least $15 million per season. Considering Tony Romo is making more than $17 million per year with CBS and ESPN is paying Troy Aikman $18 million per season, McVay could ask for more.

Making similar money as a top NFL coach with far fewer time commitments and fewer instances of mental frustration and exhaustion would be especially appealing to a family that has already experienced the difficulties of coaching at this level.

During an Instagram “Ask Me Anything” session in November, McVay’s wife Veronika Khomyn detailed how McVay’s endless work schedule and time commitments with the Rams have taken away time he can spend with his family.

“Time together. For sure. Time for friends & family. When so much responsibility comes with a job it’s hard to be able to be present in all areas of life all at the same time. It’s impossible.”

Veronika Khomyn, wife of Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay, on the difficulties of being married to an NFL coach

The Rams’ future also plays a part in this. There is already discussion around the NFL regarding Matthew Stafford and the possibility that he might retire before long. At the same time, future Hall of Fame inductee Aaron Donald has heavily contemplated ending his career.

All of this from a team without a 2023 first-round pick near the end of a season where it will likely win no more than six games. It’s why no one would be surprised if McVay retires in 2023 and spends several years in the broadcast booth.

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