The former NFL head coach who won nearly 62 percent of his 125 games with the Packers and brought another Super Bowl championship to Green Bay has been focused on self-improvement during his season away from the game. He has been reviewing the tape in his first full year outside of football since he was a teenager, both reflecting on everything he did as a head coach and studying all 32 of the current teams around the league — including the Packers.
“Just revisiting a lot of conversations that you haven’t had in a while and really having the time to do that,” McCarthy said in an interview on the “RapSheet + Friends” podcast with NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. “And then, on top of that, the best part is to take a 360-degree view of the National Football League and what it takes to be successful.”
The process is essential for McCarthy with his eye on a 2020 return to the NFL, where he certainly has the credentials to be considered a top coaching candidate for any team looking to make a change. He made the playoffs in nine of his 13 seasons with the Packers while helping develop two of the franchise’s all-time best quarterbacks: Brett Favre and Aaron Rodgers.
In a way, McCarthy has also already assembled a coaching staff of sorts through The McCarthy Project, which is a collaboration with coaches Jim Haslett, Frank Cignetti Jr. and Scott McCurley that revolves around studying league trends, rebuilding playbooks and other deep-dive processes, according to NFL insider Tom Pelissero.
“Sustaining success in this league is the biggest challenge,” McCarthy told Pelissero. “To do it right and be in the position to win it every year, that’s what I’m looking for. That’s what I want to be paired with. I’m not just trying to go win one. I’m looking to win them all.”
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McCarthy Says He Needs NFL Return
It has been an interesting year for the former Packers coach, who was dumped unceremoniously near the end of the 2018 season and then became a central component of a scathing piece from Bleacher Report that examined his relationship with Rodgers and painted a tense and toxic picture within the organization.
Once the dust settled, though, McCarthy was staring at an uncertain future in the only city his two youngest daughters — 11-year-old Gabrielle and 8-year-old Isabella — have ever known. According to Pelissero, McCarthy considers one of his biggest regrets not better preparing his family for the aftermath of his departure from the Packers.
But asked why he needs to do this, why he has been so driven to make a push for his next job in the NFL, why now is the right time, McCarthy got a little emotional.
“It’s a very selfish profession,” McCarthy told Pelissero, choking up a bit as he spoke. “But what I’ve found through this transition … is our family needs to do this. This is something that, just everything that’s happened, this will be a great opportunity.”
There will be a number of teams looking for a new coach come 2020, with the Washington Redskins and Carolina Panthers each getting a jumpstart on the search process after firing their head coaches midseason. Lead jobs are also expected to open up in Dallas, New York and Cleveland, among other places, that could suit McCarthy’s skill set — though, McCarthy reportedly turned down the Browns last season.
“Coaching in the league is a way of life and you think it’s a way of life for a coach, but it’s your whole family,” McCarthy said. “We need football right now. We won’t need it forever, but we need it right now.”