The Los Angeles Rams are joining the Los Angeles Chargers for a very unique Hard Knocks. Head coach Sean McVay is embracing the innate weirdness of holding training camp during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and is finding the humor in an innately strange situation. He proved this during the latest teaser trailer by joking about his welding mask.
NFL Films released a 45-second clip that showed McVay addressing his team. He explained the importance of wearing a mask to protect players and coaches alike. After explaining the seriousness of the situation, however, McVay opted to lighten the mood. He made jokes about his face mask and talked about bringing in a welding torch for team meetings.
"How funny would it be, first team meeting, I come in with a blowtorch over my shoulder with this thing," McVay asked. "All right, here we go. Welcome to 2020. I've been doing some welding today, boys."
NFL teams have adjusted to the changes in safety guidelines as they returned to their respective facilities. Some franchises have installed plexiglass barriers between lockers while all have reorganized meeting rooms to enhance social distancing. Daily testing is becoming the norm for these players, as is wearing a mask. Having a constant face covering may not be ideal for many members of these teams, but McVay is finding ways to make the situation entertaining for him and his players.
The Rams previously appeared on Hard Knocks prior to the 2016 season. Jeff Fisher was the head coach at the time as the team moved from St. Louis to Los Angeles. McVay was not with the team, but he did appear at the tail end of Amazon Prime's All or Nothing documentary series the same year. The Chargers, on the other hand, are making their first appearance on the popular HBO series. Head coach Anthony Lynn previously appeared back in 2010 when he was an assistant coach on the New York Jets.
While many teams do not like having the NFL Films cameras around — such as the former Oakland Raiders — the Rams have a different opinion. McVay said in a press release that he is looking forward to the increase in media coverage. He said that it provided a better viewpoint for fans of the team.
"We are looking forward to having Hard Knocks in our camp this year," McVay said. "Hard Knocks always offers a rare opportunity for our fans to see our players' hard work to prepare for the season, as well as gives them a peek behind the curtain to observe these guys off the field, too. This year will be special because the show will also get an unprecedented look at SoFi Stadium, Stan Kroenke's vision for professional football in L.A."