Rams head coach Sean McVay was visibly disappointed as he sat at a podium in the bowels of Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sunday in the immediate aftermath of Los Angeles' loss to New England in Super Bowl LIII.
"This one is going to stick with you and it just stings in your gut," he said that day, encompassing the many feelings associated with the 13-3 loss.
But as he stood at his usual spot at the podium in the Rams' Thousand Oaks facility, he seemed ready to attack whatever is next in the offseason.
"I think, if anything, if you look at people like we've talked about that are successful in life, it's people that have the ability to overcome adversity," McVay said Tuesday. "And if you can't handle getting gut punched and responding, this business probably isn't for you. And that's the only way I know how to respond as a coach."
McVay isn't a man who seems to need much motivation to get things done. But he illustrated exactly what's going into his approach as the Rams begin the 2019 offseason.
"And it's a resilient mindset and it's one of gratitude for what players and coaches have done this year," McVay said. "But also, the unfinished element of it will just continue to drive you in the right way as you move forward."
"You've got to move on, and you get over it," McVay later added, before also noting, "but you won't forget it."
In getting to the offseason, it's a positive problem to have, but McVay admitted Los Angeles is a bit behind when it comes to offseason preparations compared to everyone else in the league. Quarterbacks coach Zac Taylor departing to become head coach of the Bengals is one example — as L.A. will have to fill that role through either an internal or external candidate.
McVay noted that he didn't know Taylor all that well before hiring him to be a part of the initial staff in Los Angeles, but as he leaves, he's an impressive person.
"Really happy for Zac," McVay said. "Getting a chance to be around him, he's been nothing short of really impressive. He's got a great command of the room. He's a great communicator. He's got a quiet confidence about himself that when you're just around somebody like him, you say, 'That guy is an impressive human being.' I think he'll do a great job as a leader of that organization.
"As far as what we're going to do moving forward, those are things that we're still filtering through," McVay continued, noting that he'd be getting to them as soon as he was finished talking to the media.
There's also the element of left tackle Andrew Whitworth and his possible retirement. Whitworth said after Sunday's game that he would talk to McVay and his family in order to make that decision. And while there certainly is a chance Whitworth decides to hang it up, McVay said he saw Whitworth yesterday on an exercise bike in the facility and joked, "You're sicker than I am."
"Andrew is a player that I've got a special relationship with him. And that's something where he's certainly earned the right to make that decision. He was playing pretty good football still. So I think he's going to be able to talk with [his wife] Melissa, and his family, and see what's best for them," McVay said.
"I'll get a chance to talk with Andrew today. Our dialogue will be ongoing. I think, really, he's earned the right and the respect to be able to have a little bit of time to make the decision if he doesn't have the clarity on if he wants to be back or not. I know there's a lot of people that are hoping that he does, but if not I don't think you can say anything but what a phenomenal career, and what an even more impressive person this guy is being around him."
Check out the best photos from the Los Angeles Rams matchup against the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LIII.
And even someone as intense as McVay will take a well-earned break from football in the coming couple of weeks before the NFL Combine begins at the end of the month.
"I think what we'll have when we get back from the Combine is a little bit of an accelerated schedule with regards to our scheme evaluation, things like that," McVay said. "But what we'll try to do this week is address our own players in terms of the write ups, where we feel like we're at. And then how that affects us as we move forward with re-signing our free agents or letting them test the waters. And then you look at your other avenues in order to acquire other players and fill out your roster.
"You take care of the coaches — like you mentioned, we've got a couple spots that we've got to be able to fill. So this week will serve as a chance where last year, you get a couple weeks off and then you come back and then you're really working during this time. We'll take this week to really kind of get a lot of things done, and then we'll give the coaches a couple weeks off before we go to the Combine. So I think we all need it a little bit."