The Packers finally ripped off the band aid and fired Mike McCarthy. This has been about 4 years coming.
The Packers have really failed to adapt to the modern NFL, and a lot of that has to do with McCarthy's coaching. He became even more predictable after the Packers won the Super Bowl. His offense couldn't adapt. He couldn't keep up with the changes to offense. He wouldn't help his star QB out with modern, efficient offense. He refused to change and he paid the ultimate price.
For those of you saying they should have waited the last 4 weeks to do this, why? We all knew this was coming. We all saw the writing on the wall earlier this year when they couldn't beat the Lions. Hell, us Packer fans all saw the writing on the wall the past 4 years with year after year of fumbled playoff appearances. This team should have been better. This team should have gone to more Super Bowl's. This team should have been lethal offensively. This team shouldn't have had to squeeze and sneak into the playoffs year after year. They should have dominated the North. They should have had the division, or at the very least, a wild card spot by week 11 or 12. But that didn't happen.
And before you say that I am a whiny baby, and I should be happy with the one ring and the year after year of playoff appearances, stop. I know that I root for a perennial playoff team. I know they won a Super Bowl. I know they have Aaron Rodgers. But, this team should have been up there with the Patriots, Steelers and, more recently, the Rams. They should have always been in the contender conversation. They shouldn't have had to just barely make the playoffs year after year after year. And most of that has to do with McCarthy.
Before I get into the meat of this though I do want to heap some of the blame on Aaron Rodgers. He has been pretty bad, for him, this season. He is inefficient, hurt and missing receivers more often than normal. He is not as sharp as he has seemed in the past. And it's not like he doesn't have weapons. Davante Adams is a top tier NFL wide out. Aaron Jones is a legit number one back. The O line is stout. Jimmy Graham, while not as dangerous as he once was, is still a red zone threat. Rodgers has weapons and he is under performing. Plain and simple.
Now back to McCarthy. As I said at the top, he just refused to change his ways. The Packers were predictable. He was beginning to lose the locker room and Rodgers. Rodgers would, according to a lot of reports, change plays at his choosing. He didn't listen to McCarthy. That shouldn't happen with a head coach and his star QB. Even worse though, McCarthy seemingly blamed everyone but himself. He let Dom Capers take the blame last season for the porous defense, which needs a massive amount of fixing, but that is another topic for another day. He blamed the front office for not giving him enough game breakers on offense. He blamed his position coaches for the random injuries and poor play of those players. It was never, ever his fault. Well, when you are a 14 point favorite, at home, against probably the second worst team in the NFL, you have no one to blame but yourself for what occurred. The team was anemic on offense. They couldn't move the ball on a team that has given up chunks and chunks of yards all year. They couldn't put the ball in the end zone. They couldn't play in the poor weather that has always worked to their advantage. They looked really, really bad, and I put a lot of that on McCarthy.
To fire him directly after the game, to his surprise as it was reported, was rough, but we all knew this was going to happen. We all saw it coming. It was a foregone conclusion. The time was now for the Packers to make a change. McCarthy had done all he could do, and everyone needed to move on.
As for who I think the Packers should go after as their new head coach, I am kind of torn. The names I have seen pop up most are Josh Mcdaniels, John Defillipo and Lincoln Riley. Of course Jim Harbaugh has come up and there is the interim coach, Joe Philbin, among others. I know the trend is to go towards an offensive minded coach, but after what Mcdaniels did to the Colts last year, I do not want him. Defillipo needs more time before he is the head coach of the Packers. Lincoln Riley is not ready for the pros. Jim Harbaugh, if he is to leave Michigan for this job, will have left Michigan without accomplishing much of anything. And Joe Philbin has already failed spectacularly as a head coach in Miami. I think, right now, even though he has said he isn't interested, I would try and go after Bruce Arians. He would immediately command the respect of the locker room and Aaron Rodgers. And, he is a great coach. If not Arians, I would go for Jim Harbaugh's brother, John Harbaugh. There is no guarantee that he will be let go, or leave Baltimore, but if he did, I feel like he would get the same respect as Arians. Those are my top 2 choices. I'm sure they will go after Mcdaniels, that is the betting favorite. But, I want Arians or John Harbaugh. Hell, at this point, I would even consider a former coach like Gary Kubiak. He would bring instant credibility.
The Mike McCarty era in Green Bay is over. Thank god. That is how I feel about all of this. And, I am sure that McCarthy will get another job and I wish him success. The time had come for a change.
Ty is the Pop Culture editor for SeedSing and the other host of the X Millennial Man Podcast. The Head Editor picked the Packers to win the NFC North this year. His punishment? His hometown Bengals will finally fire Marvin Lewis and make Mike McCarthy the coach for the next decade.
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