The Packers have made a shocking mid-season change, firing head coach Mike McCarthy, the team announced in a statement posted to Twitter.
The team also announced that offensive coordinator Joe Philbin would take over as interim coach. While McCarthy was widely known to be on the hot seat, an in-season change is still a surprise because of his history with the team. The change comes immediately after the Packers’ embarrassing home loss to the Cardinals, where they lost as massive favorites.
A source told Adam Schefter of ESPN that the team brought McCarthy in immediately after the game and let him go, and that McCarthy was “not expecting it”. The “writing was on the wall” already, but today’s loss was the “final straw” for McCarthy, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, who notes that McCarthy will be “very desirable” as a free agent.
McCarthy has been linked to the Browns’ opening in recent weeks, and he should be considered a strong candidate for that job. This was the 13th season in Green Bay for McCarthy, who won a Super Bowl with the team back in 2010. There’s been rumors for a couple years now that McCarthy and Aaron Rodgers haven’t seen eye-to-eye, and things appeared to reach a boiling point in recent weeks with multiple tough losses.
By Andrew Ortenberg