GREEN BAY, Wis. – In an offseason of significant changes, the Green Bay Packers should have stability at the head coaching position.
Coach Mike McCarthy received a one-year contract extension during this past season, sources told ESPN.
The deal keeps McCarthy under contract through the 2019 season. McCarthy would have been entering the final year of his contract in 2018 without an extension.
This will help McCarthy attract defensive coordinator candidates who otherwise might have been reluctant to join a lame-duck head coach. McCarthy is looking for a new defensive coordinator after he fired Dom Capers on Monday. At least two other defensive assistants, inside linebackers coach Scott McCurley and defensive line Mike Trgovac, also were let go.
There also could be some shakeup on the offensive staff, a source said. The Packers already know they will need a new receivers coach. Luke Getsy left to become the offensive coordinator at Mississippi State, and there could be a significant restructuring of responsibilities on that side of the ball, including a possible change at offensive coordinator, the source said. Edgar Bennett has been the coordinator since 2015. Bennett is a former receivers coach, and there’s some consideration to moving him back into that role.
The Packers want to keep McCarthy as coach even though they are seeking a new general manager because Ted Thompson won’t return for a 14th season in that capacity, despite signing a one-year extension of his own after the 2016 season that, like McCarthy’s deal, also was never announced.
Thompson, 64, will move into a new role as senior adviser to football operations, the team announced Tuesday.
Packers president Mark Murphy will conduct a search to find Thompson’s replacement, and there are multiple candidates with ties to McCarthy – including all the internal possibilities (Russ Ball, Brian Gutekunst, Eliot Wolf and Alonzo Highsmith) plus outside candidates such as Seahawks GM John Schneider and Raiders GM Reggie McKenzie.
It’s possible the Packers could extend McCarthy again or start over with a new deal once a general manager is hired. Both Thompson and McCarthy almost always had contracts that ran concurrently.
McCarthy is 131-78-1 (including 10-8 in the postseason) with one Super Bowl in his 12 NFL seasons.