After 13 seasons and a Super Bowl title, the Mike McCarthy era is over in Green Bay. We examine what may have lead to his dismissal and what he might do next.
Failure to evolve as a play caller
It’s hard to imagine firing a coach that brought your franchise a Super Bowl the way the Green Bay Packers got rid of Mike McCarthy.
The loss to the Arizona Cardinals was the final nail in the coffin but the truth is according to most insiders, McCarthy was going to be fired at the end of the season anyway.
One of the constant criticisms of coach McCarthy is that he has not changed with the times.
When he took over as Packers head coach 13 years ago, the NFL was a much different league than it is today. In that time, most observers would agree that Mike McCarthy didn’t change much of anything about his offense.
Now it could be argued that he’s an old school coach and he isn’t part of this modern wave of NFL coaches with their fancy formations and high powered offenses. The problem for him is that isn’t a good enough excuse.
In New England Bill Belichik has had to change his approach constantly. His core beliefs are still in tact but he has updated his coaching methods to suit his roster.
In Kansas City Andy Reid is constantly updating his seemingly never ending playbook and he maximizes the abilities of all his players.
Then there’s Sean Payton in New Orleans or Pete Carrol who lost the Legion of Boom yet still has his team fighting for a playoff spot in a year where most people agreed this might be the worst roster he’s had since his first year in Seattle.
On top of all of that, McCarthy has one of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history and that in itself is a deal breaker.
Tension between Head Coach and Quarterback
There has been a lot made about the friction between Rodgers and McCarthy but it’s hard to say that it was the reason for him being let go.
It’s also hard to think it didn’t play a part as well.
First of all, as soon Aaron Rodgers signed a deal to make him the highest played player of all time, there was no way that McCarthy could win any kind of battle with his star QB.
Truth be told, even without the contract the Packers are choosing Rodgers over McCarthy 100 times out of 100.
There were no obvious incidents but reports are that this season, Rodgers would constantly change any play call he didn’t like from McCarthy.
That’s not abnormal for a quarterback with Rodgers ability but what is troubling is that some insiders say it became a competition between the two.
Now that is a huge problem.
What’s next for Mike McCarthy?
A lot of reports are linking him with the Cleveland Browns job which makes sense.
They have a talented young nucleus that includes a franchise quarterback.
He has direct ties to Browns general manager John Dorsey who used to be in Green Bay.
If he doesn’t end up with the Browns, there are many possibilities around the league depending on who gets fired at the end of this season.
The Green Bay Packers may not want him anymore but there is no doubt that Mike McCarthy will be in high demand this offseason.