When the Los Angeles Rams face the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LIII in two weeks, it pits one of the game’s legendary figures in Bill Belichick facing the NFL’s newest young gun, Sean McVay.
The 32-year-old McVay will become the youngest head coach in Super Bowl history when he faces off against Belichick. However, it will not be the first time the two head coaches faced off on the field.
During the 2015 season, New England hosted the Washington Redskins, which included a young offensive coordinator by the name of Sean McVay. Belichick and then-defensive coordinator Matt Patricia got the better of McVay’s Redskins offense in a 27-10 victory in Foxborough.
New England’s defense held then-Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins to a paltry 22 of 40 for 217 yards with a touchdown and interception. The Patriots outgained Washington 460 to 250 and limited the ‘Skins to just 37 yards rushing.
While it’s highly unlikely the Patriots will limit the Rams to such a paltry total with CJ Anderson and whatever version of Todd Gurley appears in Atlanta, there is one similar property from that game that may rear its head again on February 3.
The Patriots held the ball for over 37 minutes during that ’15 game and in the process, dominated time of possession. It would not be surprising to see Belichick and Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels incorporate yet another ball control attack similar to what we have seen throughout the playoffs.
Much has changed with McVay since that day in November 2015 – most notably his ascension in the league as one of the NFL’s preeminent offensive minds. Yet, to win his first Super Bowl, he will have to do something he was unable to do nearly four years ago – solve a Belichick defense.