The St. Louis Rams announced Tuesday that former Denver Broncos head coach and New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels has agreed to become the Rams’ offensive coordinator.
“We are happy to announce that Josh will be a part of our staff,” said Rams Head Coach Steve Spagnuolo. “I’ve always recognized that he is one of the top offensive minds in the NFL. We think he is a great addition to our organization.”
McDaniels spent the last two seasons as the head coach of the Broncos after serving as an assistant with the Patriots from 2001-08. While in New England, McDaniels played a key role on a staff that won three Super Bowl titles and four AFC championships in his eight seasons with the organization.
He was a personnel assistant on the 2001 team that defeated the Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI, served as a defensive assistant on the 2003 club that won Super Bowl XXXVIII and was promoted to quarterbacks coach in 2004, a season that culminated with a victory over the Eagles in Super Bowl XXXIX. McDaniels was New England’s offensive coordinator in 2007 when the Patriots fell to the Giants in Super Bowl XVII. Spagnuolo was New York’s defensive coordinator in that contest.
During McDaniels’ first season in Denver, QB Kyle Orton set career highs for pass attempts, completions, passing yards, touchdown passes and passer rating while tying his career low for interceptions. Orton’s 3,802 yards were the sixth highest for a season in Broncos history. In 2010, the Broncos ranked seventh in the NFL in passing yards per game and finished 13th in total yards per game.
In addition to his role with Patriots quarterbacks, McDaniels added the title of offensive coordinator in 2006. In his second season as New England’s offensive play caller, McDaniels oversaw a unit that broke several NFL records, including points scored, touchdowns scored and most players scoring a touchdown.
Under McDaniels’ tutelage, 2007 NFL MVP Tom Brady broke the NFL record for touchdown passes in a season (50) and led the league in both passing yards (4,806) and passer rating (117.2). Brady also set franchise marks in nearly every major passing category, while WR Wes Welker set the franchise record for receptions in a season (112) and WR Randy Moss broke the NFL record for touchdown receptions with 23. The Patriots offense also posted the franchise’s highest average yards per rush in 22 seasons with 4.1 yards per carry and the team’s 17 rushing touchdowns were the second highest total in the previous 20 years.
Brady went to three Pro Bowls during his six seasons with McDaniels serving as his position coach. After Brady suffered a season-ending knee injury in the 2008 regular-season opener, another McDaniels protégé, Matt Cassel, led the club to a 10-5 record as a starter. In his first season as an NFL starter, Cassel posted the third-best completion percentage in Patriots history (63.4) while passing for 3,693 yards with 21 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.