Wade Phillips joins Rams as defensive coordinator

New Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay will have at least one established veteran on his staff as he begins his first season as the youngest head coach in NFL history.

Phillips is joining the Rams as the team's defensive coordinator on a lucrative three-year deal, a person familiar with the move told USA TODAY Sports' Tom Pelissero. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal had not been announced.

Phillips, 69, joins the 30-year-old McVay after leading the Denver Broncos' defense the past two seasons. His top-ranked unit in 2015 helped Denver secure the Super Bowl 50 title.

But his contract expired at the conclusion of the season, and the Broncos were in flux after head coach Gary Kubiak retired.  Phillips tweeted last Monday that he was "unemployed" but hoped to remain with the Broncos. New coach Vance Joseph had left the door open for a possible Phillips return but now must look elsewhere to fill the defensive coordinator role on his staff.

Phillips takes over a Rams defense that ranked ninth last season despite the team's 4-12 finish. Two-time all-pro defensive tackle Aaron Donald has been the centerpiece of the unit.

USA TODAY Sports


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