‘You seem like an L.A. guy already.’ Rams’ coach is learning what it’s like to live in the city
The only-in-L.A. moments that Sean McVay once heard about are starting to pile up.
The Rams’ 31-year-old coach participated in the NFL’s owners meetings this week at the Arizona Biltmore resort. But he woke up to online news reports about his recent purchase of a $2.7-million Encino home.
“My girlfriend, she’s on social media, I’m not,” McVay told reporters Wednesday. “And she says, ‘You know, it’s everywhere, where we’re living,’ and all that stuff.”
Since his hiring in January — the day after a dinner at Spago that included a table visit by celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck — McVay has been busy. He has hired coaches, attended the Super Bowl and scouting combine and worked with General Manager Les Snead to shed players from the roster and acquire others through free agency.
He also has been prepping for next month’s draft and the start of voluntary offseason workouts.
But McVay has taken occasional breaks while acclimating to Southern California.
“I’ve had people joke with me,” he said. “They say, ‘You seem like an L.A. guy already.’”
McVay is quickly learning the L.A. social landscape.
“You realize how normal it is,” he said, “especially if you go eat or have dinner in West Hollywood — kind of everybody is somebody out there.”
Among the first weekends McVay spent in L.A.: those coinciding with the Grammy Awards and the Academy Awards.
He somewhat naively asked a member of the Rams business staff if it was possible to get a table for 10 at trendy Catch on Melrose Avenue. The staff member came through, but McVay said she later relayed a message via another employee.
“‘We’ve got to tell the coach that he’s got to give me a little bit more advance notice when it’s Oscar and Grammy weekend,’” McVay said, recounting the message. “‘He’s got to learn the social calendar a little bit better around here too.’”
There is no confusion about McVay’s work calendar. He cannot wait for April 10, the first day of the Rams’ 10-week offseason workout program and the chance to finally work with quarterback Jared Goff.
McVay said the absence of contact with players in the initial months after the season — mandated by the collective bargaining agreement — has been “really frustrating,” especially as it relates to the 22-year-old Goff.
The No. 1 pick in the 2016 draft will try to build upon a shaky rookie season that included seven winless starts.
In January, Goff said he expected McVay to “bring out the best in me” and that it was “definitely cool” to play for a coach not that far removed from his age.
McVay said Wednesday that he would “start from scratch” with Goff.
“Every minute is so precious, none more than with the quarterback position, with the amount of information that he’s going to have to absorb and then retain,” McVay said.
Goff has not been idle: He has worked on his throwing mechanics with quarterback trainers Tom House and Adam Dedeaux, who have tutored Tom Brady and Matt Ryan among others.
McVay, offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur and quarterbacks coach Greg Olson spent weeks huddled at the Rams’ Thousand Oaks facility preparing for how they will present information to quarterbacks.
“Making sure all three of us, coming from different places, are speaking that same language and not sending mixed messages,” McVay said.
But McVay, a head coach for the first time at any level, spent this week conferring with fellow NFL coaches. He welcomed their advice.
“You don’t want to be a fan, but in a lot of ways you have so much respect for this game that I am a fan of a lot of these coaches,” he said.
McVay returned to Los Angeles on Wednesday afternoon. He will move into his new home in about a month — after his mother, Cindy, a professional interior designer, oversees the furnishings.
“It’s funny because she’s done the last two places that I’ve lived,” McVay said. “And she’s got a great feel for it. And then she gives you the bill and you say, ‘What kind of deal is this for your son?’”
No family discount?
“She said, ‘This is the discount,’” McVay said, laughing. “I said, ‘Geez, Mom, you have pretty expensive taste.’”
Follow Gary Klein on Twitter @latimesklein
Go beyond the scoreboard
Get the latest on L.A.'s teams in the daily Sports Report newsletter.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.