How old is Sean McVay? NFL’s youngest head coach already in second Super Bowl with Rams

When the Rams hired Sean McVay, he made history as the youngest head coach ever hired in the NFL.

McVay was just a month shy of his 31st birthday at the time, making him the first coach hired before turning 31.

The gamble on the young coach has not only proven to be successful, but it has reshaped the sport. The average age of NFL head coaches will be 48.5 years old heading into next season after this offseason’s coaching carousel saw nine new coaches hired. The average age of a head coach has shifted nearly six years younger in the span of just a few years. Two newly hired head coaches, Mike McDaniel (Dolphins) and Kevin O’Connell (Vikings), are both under 40 years old. O’Connell comes from the McVay coaching tree.

Now, McVay is coaching the Rams to their second Super Bowl in his fifth season as a head coach, and teams across the league have embraced the concept of hiring young coaches.

McVay has the chance to make more history with the team should he win Super Bowl 56 against the Bengals. Where would he rank among the youngest head coaches ever to hoist the Lombardi Trophy? Sporting News dives in.

Youngest NFL coach to win a Super Bowl

The youngest coach in NFL history to win a Super Bowl was the Steelers’ Mike Tomlin in Super Bowl 43. In his second year as head coach, he led Pittsburgh to a 12-4 regular-season record and won the title in a 27- 23 victory over the Cardinals.

At the time of his win, Tomlin was 36 years old.

Coach Team Age Super Bowl
Mike Tomlin Steelers 36 43
Jon Gruden Buccaneers 39 37
John Madden Raiders 40 11
Joe Gibbs Washington 43 17
Chuck Noll Steelers 43 9
Don Shula Dolphins 43 7
Tom Flores Raiders 43 15

A win by the Rams would make McVay, 36, the youngest head coach ever to win the Super Bowl. Should the Bengals win, Zac Taylor, 38, would become the second-youngest head coach to win the Super Bowl, trailing only Tomlin.

Both coaches already are making appearances on the list of the youngest coaches ever to appear in a Super Bowl, making this the youngest matchup of coaches in the game’s history.

Coach Age Super Bowl
Sean McVay 33 years, 11 days 53
Sean McVay 36 years, 22 days 56
Mike Tomlin 36 years, 10 months and 18 days 43
Bill Cowher 38 years, 8 months, 21 days 30
Zac Taylor 38 years, 9 months, 5 days 56
Mike Tomlin 38 years, 10 months, 23 days 45
Don Shula 39 years, 9 days 3
Jon Gruden 39 years, 5 months, 10 days 37
Kyle Shanahan 40 years, 1 month, 20 days 54
John Rauch 40 years, 4 months, 26 days 2

McVay is already both the youngest and second-youngest coach to appear in a Super Bowl. Tomlin and Bill Cowher separate him and Taylor on the list of youngest coaches.

For comparison, the average age of a coach in the Super Bowl is 50.

Youngest coaches hired in the NFL

At the time of their hiring, both McVay and Taylor were among the youngest coaches ever signed on by an NFL team, with McVay holding the distinction as the youngest.

Coach (Team) Age
Sean McVay, Rams 30 years, 11 months
Lane Kiffin, Raiders 31 years, 8 months
Harland Answers, Rams 31 years, 11 months
John Michelosen, Steelers 32 years, 2 months
Raheem Morris, Buccaneers 32 years, 4 months
David Shula, Bengals 32 years, 7 months
Josh McDaniels, Broncos 32 years, 8 months
John Madden, Raiders 32 years, 10 months
Don Shula, Colts 33 years, 4 days
Al Davis, Raiders 33 years, 6 months
Joe Collier, Bills 33 years, 7 months
Bob Snyder, Rams 33 years, 11 month
Jim Trimble, Eagles 34 years, 3 months
Jon Gruden, Raiders 34 years, 5 months
Bill Cowher, Steelers 34 years, 8 months, 13 days
Joe Kuharich, Cardinals 34 years, 8 months, 25 days
Jack Christiansen, 49ers 34 years, 9 months, 10 days
Norm Van Brocklin, Vikings 34 years, 10 months, 3 days
Mike Tomlin, Steelers 34 years, 10 months, 7 days
Joe Schmidt, Lions 34 years, 11 months, 23 days
Eric Mangini, Jets 34 years, 11 months, 28 days
Mike Shanahan, Raiders 35 years, 6 months
Zac Taylor, Bengals 35 years, 8 months, 26 days

Taylor ranks as the 23rd-youngest head coach hired by a team, and McVay sits at No. 1.

But both have helped start a trend for the direction the league is heading in. As of Feb. 13, here are the youngest head coaches heading into the 2022 season.

Coach Team Age Record
Sean McVay Rams 36 55-26
* Kevin O’Connell Vikings 36 0-0
Zac Taylor Bengals 38 16-32-1
Mike McDaniel Dolphins 38 0-0
Brandon Staley Chargers 39 9-8
Arthur Smith Falcons 39 7-10
Kevin Stefanski Browns 39 19-14
Nick Sirianni Eagles 40 9-8
Kyle Shanahan 49ers 42 39-42
Matt LaFleur Packers 42 39-10

* Reported to be hired by the Vikings. Minnesota has not announced the move.

Most wins by under-40 coach

Of course, with the trips to the Super Bowl, McVay has certainly found plenty of regular-season success.

He has already vaulted himself up to the second-most wins by a coach under 40 years old in NFL history, with only the Raiders’ John Madden having more before turning 40.

Coach Team Wins
John Madden Raiders 70
Sean McVay Rams 55
Mike Tomlin Steelers 55
Bill Cowher Steelers 53
Jon Gruden Raiders / Buccaneers 50

McVay stands a decent chance of blowing past Madden’s record. He will have four more seasons before turning 40, and to this point in his career, he has averaged 11 wins per season. At that rate, he would hit 99 coaching wins, all but certainly putting him on pace to be the youngest coach to reach 100 wins.

Madden holds that distinction as he hit the 100-win threshold at age 42.

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