Sean McVay’s promotion from tight ends coach to offensive coordinator for the Washington Redskins became official on Tuesday when he agreed to a contract to serve in that role under new coach Jay Gruden.
Such a move had been in the works for nearly a week, as a person familiar with Gruden’s plans told The Washington Times on Jan. 9, when Gruden was introduced as the team’s next coach, that McVay was being eyed for that role and Jim Haslett would remain defensive coordinator. Another person confirmed Tuesday that McVay’s promotion was made official earlier in the day.
The terms of the contract were not immediately available, though McVay, 27, will easily become the youngest offensive coordinator in the NFL. He is highly regarded by coaches who have worked alongside him and players who have worked with him.
“I think very highly of Sean,” tight end Logan Paulsen said last week. “I can’t say enough good things about him. He works extremely hard. He knows the offense really well. He’s got a great football mind. He understands the big picture of offenses and can explain things really well. So I think he’s kind of a natural offensive coordinator.”
A wide receiver at Miami (Ohio) from 2004 through 2007, McVay was an offensive assistant with Gruden in 2008 with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He followed Gruden to the Florida Tuskers of the UFL in 2009, where Gruden was the team’s offensive coordinator, and returned to the NFL a year later, serving as an offensive assistant with the Redskins in 2010.
Hoping to prevent McVay from leaving for other opportunities, the Redskins promoted him to tight ends coach in 2011. He was retained following the firing of coach Mike Shanahan, offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan and several other assistant coaches on Dec. 30.
McVay likely won’t see a drastic change in his responsibilities. Gruden said during his introductory press conference that he expects to call offensive plays during the game. It’s not known if McVay will continue to serve as a positional coach in addition to running the offense.
“I think the thing that sets him apart is his knowledge of the game and his ability to communicate – that makes him great,” Paulsen said. “When you know what you’re doing, guys respect that and we respected that in our room. And I think the more guys are exposed to him and his knowledge and his understanding of the game, they’ll respect that he deserves to be in this position and that he’s earned this position and it’s not just been handed to him. He’s a guy who is credentialed in knowledge of the game and is ready for this job.”
Staff writer Brian McNally contributed to this report.