LOS ANGELES -- When the Los Angeles Rams began the 2016 season, their entire staff had combined to coach NFL quarterbacks for one year. That's right, one -- an unfathomable lack of experience when considering how much was riding on the development of rookie quarterback Jared Goff, the No. 1 overall pick of the 2016 draft.
The Rams are taking a far different approach now.
On Wednesday, they announced the coaching staff under rookie head coach Sean McVay, a contingent that boasts a combined 18 years as an NFL quarterbacks coach by three different assistants. Matt LaFleur -- the offensive coordinator, though McVay will call plays -- served as quarterbacks coach for the Redskins from 2010 to 2013 and the Falcons from 2015 to 2016. Greg Olson, the Rams' new quarterbacks coach, held the same role with the 49ers (2001), Bears (2003), Lions (2004-05), Buccaneers (2008-11) and Jaguars (2012). Even Zac Taylor, the assistant wide receivers coach, served as quarterbacks coach for the Dolphins from 2013 to 2015.
And that doesn't even include McVay, who spent the past three years as the Redskins' offensive coordinator, implementing a quarterback-friendly offense that is widely credited for the development of Kirk Cousins.
Last season, Goff's coach was Chris Weinke, a former Heisman Trophy winner who entered with only one season of experience as an NFL quarterbacks coach. His previous five years were spent as director of football at IMG Academy. The head coach, Jeff Fisher, and the assistant head coach, Dave McGinnis, came up coaching defenses. The offensive coordinator, Rob Boras, previously coached tight ends.
Goff never stood a chance. He came in as the NFL's youngest quarterback, having never taken a snap from under center or called a play from the huddle in college, and finished with a horrific 22.2 Total QBR in seven starts, all losses. The Rams' focus has since turned to bringing in coaches who can improve the offense, a unit that has amassed the NFL's fewest yards each of the past two seasons. And in doing so, they have put together a staff stocked with quarterback expertise.
LaFleur worked with Robert Griffin III when he was Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2012 and with Matt Ryan when he was MVP in 2016. Olson, who also has extensive experience as an offensive coordinator, got the most out of established quarterbacks like Jeff Garcia and Joey Harrington. He oversaw a Pro Bowl season from Marc Bulger in 2006, helped Josh Freeman break out in 2010, guided Derek Carr through his rookie year in 2014 and helped Blake Bortles take strides as a second-year player in 2015. Taylor spent three years working with Ryan Tannehill, who compiled an 87.7 passer rating under his watch despite playing behind a bad offensive line.
The Rams desperately need Goff to take major strides in his second season, and they believe they have the coaching staff to guide him through it.