Inside the Herd – LA Rams

October 2, 2019

Episode 1

It takes people to make a successful team and the Los Angeles Rams leadership recognizes that. “One of the main reasons we have had the success that we have had is that we have leadership that cares about people not just players” – Jacques McClendon, Director Player Engagement, Los Angeles Rams, on building a great team.

Champions are more than just champions. They are people. And people matter!

Jacques McClendon:
Well, all right, fellas, man, that's a little bit about player engagement and what we do as a whole department. What's cool about what we do is kind of globally making sure that you all have everything you need from a resource standpoint. And as a former player, I can tell you I've sat in that seat. I think my job is not about preaching to people about what I do. I think it's about getting the feedback that the guys are getting what they need. And you got to know that this role is not about me. It's about the players. It's about the organization I am here to serve. And to think that I mean more than serving, I’m at that point when I think that I need to leave this role. So I think just coming on with that mentality every day, just knowing that you got to be willing to do whatever's put on your plate and serve whatever's asked of you on a daily basis is the main aspect of his role.
Sean McVay:
What makes Jock a fundamental part of this organization really are the many contributions that he has in a bunch of different areas. But ultimately it's about being invested in these players. I think having been a player himself, I think it's natural for him. I think it's authentic and genuine. And that's why I think you get such a great response from the players to really help set these guys up for what to expect as a professional.
Colts, Jags, Lions, Falcons, Dolphins. So you ask, how do you play for five teams in seven years? Man, my playing career was very fun. I think that I got to experience a lot of different teams, but I think that's helped me with my job. I think the ability to have to adapt on a consistent basis is one of the reasons I'm able to have a little bit of success in this role.
What he's done for us over the last couple years with the player development has been instrumental in our success, and especially when you look at how he helps transition a lot of our rookies into that professional life.
Gerald Everett:
Jock's personality is very down to earth, genuine. What you envision in a guy in that type of role. We spend a lot of time outside of the facility and outside of work, just connecting on a more personal level, him giving me some of the advice and knowledge that college athletes aren't aware of. He's just one of those guys you turn to when you're kind of lost or confused about a certain thing or you know, just need a little bit of guidance in some area. Jacques' the guy to go to.
I got that line mentality. If you're not hearing my name, I'm probably doing my job. So I think just being in the weeds and making sure I'm behind the scenes doing what needs to be done is the best way to serve in this role. Andrew Whitworth:
He fits the O line mold. You watch Jock and the way he does it, it's about that selfless attitude of what can I do each and every day to help somebody around me be that much better. And that'll help me be great at my job.
We don't view our guys as players. They're two separate people. We deal with the person first and then the player next. And I think because we view our players in such a respect, that kind of transcends the relationship that you will see that Shawn has with the players, Les has with players, Kevin has with the players. The player care here is second and none. And I think that's one of the main reasons that we've had the success we had, because we do have leadership that cares about people, not just players. Jacques McClendon, director of Player Engagement, Los Angeles Rams.
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