HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Super Bowl LIII isn’t just a matchup of two of the NFL’s best teams. It’s also a showdown between the two faces of coaching in the league.
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick’s resume speaks for itself. A five-time Super Bowl winner, three-time NFL Coach of the Year and nine-time AFC champion, Belichick is the gold standard of coaches in the NFL, whether he ever cracks a smile or not.
Despite his experience and accolades, Belichick isn’t the talk of the town in coaching circles nowadays. Instead, that designation belongs to Los Angeles Rams head honcho, Sean McVay.
At just 33 years of age and in just his second season as a head coach, McVay has turned the fortunes of a franchise from a bottom-dweller to an energetic contender faster than the duration of the Super Bowl halftime show.
It’s no secret that other teams in the NFL are looking for the next great, young assistant coach to lead a franchise through the playoffs. After all, what McVay has done at such a young age is, frankly, unprecedented.
To put his youth in perspective, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady hoisted the Lombardi Trophy for the first time in his career in 2002 when McVay was just a 16-year-old sophomore in high school. Belichick became an assistant coach in the NFL in 1975 with the Baltimore Colts - a full 11 years before McVay was even born.
For as stoic and unassuming as Belichick is in the locker room and on the sidelines on Sunday, McVay is the complete opposite.
Running up and down the sidelines, shouting excitedly all while fulfilling his play-calling duties is a sight to behold. He even has a designated coach keep him from getting in the way of referees.
It’s fair to say that both Belichick and McVay are in different phases of their career. While McVay has just only just begun what looks to be an historic coaching career, the sun is surely setting on Belichick’s tenure as NFL head coach.
This Sunday’s Super Bowl is a glimpse to the future for McVay, standing across the sideline of a mentor and the benchmark for success in the NFL. For Belichick, it’s a reflection of his body of work as a coach for pushing the envelope into what can be achieved by any coach willing to put in the work.
Whether Super Bowl LIII is a proverbial passing of the torch remains to be seen. Regardless of a Rams or Patriots win, the past, present and future of head coaching in the NFL will be on full display on Sunday.