Sat. Dec 15th, 2018

Packers let McCarthy give locker room speech after firing

The Mike McCarthy era may have lasted longer than most realized.

The Green Bay Packers fired McCarthy shortly after their loss to the Arizona Cardinals as the team slumped to a 4-7-1 record. Joe Philbin was named interim head coach.

Although he was dismissed Sunday, the Packers allowed McCarthy to speak to the team Wednesday. His words drew a rave review from his former colleague.

"He did a fantastic job talking to the team not just about football and winning football games," Philbin said Thursday, according to Wes Hodkiewicz of the team's official website. "His passion for the team and his love for the players was clearly evident. I'm sure it was emotional for him and everyone in the room. I thought he did a great job."

McCarthy posted a 125-77-2 cumulative record with the Packers, winning a Super Bowl in 2010.

Philbin said McCarthy was permitted to speak to the team so the latter could move on from this chapter of his career.

"I think that's the Green Bay Packer way," Philbin said. "This is a first-class organization all the way around. It's been like that for 100 seasons, I would guess. I'm not that old, but I'm guessing it's been that for a long time. We do things the right way around here. (Packers CEO) Mark (Murphy), (director of football operations) Russ (Ball), and (general manager) Brian (Gutekunst) were all totally supportive. They think that was the right thing to do, as did I. Hopefully, it'll help."

Green Bay resumes its season against the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday, the first time since 2006 that McCarthy won't be on the sideline.

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