This isn’t a knee-jerk reaction to the Green Bay Packers falling below .500. Nor is it a reaction to the fact that the Packers might miss the playoffs for the second year in a row, although that should seal it. It’s become clear over the course of this season that the game has passed Mike McCarthy by.
McCarthy, the highly-successful football coach that he is, was once considered an offensive genius. A quarterback whisperer. A play-calling savant.
But things change. McCarthy has never been adept at adaptation and that is no more clear than it is now.
If you look around the league at what other coaches are doing, it’s obvious that McCarthy needs to be put out to pasture.
The New Guard
I’ve been talking about two young coaches for much of this season. The Rams Sean McVay and the 49ers Kyle Shanahan.
This is the new school. McVay and Shanahan have developed offensive systems that elevate their players. We saw this when the Packers played both teams this year.
In the Rams game, McVay’s offense had a crappy first half. In the second half, he called plays designed to get his receivers open. Has McCarthy ever even designed a play to get a receiver open? Sure, the Packers have some pick plays, but McCarthy primarily relies on Aaron Rodgers to throw receivers open.
Consider this. The Rams do not have world beaters, other than Aaron Donald. Aaron Rodgers is better than Jared Goff. Davante Adams is better than Brandin Cooks. And okay, Todd Gurley is the best back in the league, but McVay worked him into the passing game.
How many passes to the running back have the Packers executed this year? Probably more in the game against the Patriots than they have all season.
McVay gets that he needs to innovate. That he needs to adapt.
The same goes for Shanahan. Yes, the 49ers are garbage this year, primarily because they lost quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo for the season. Still, the 49ers almost beat the Packers with C.J. Beathard at quarterback.
Last week, Shanahan trotted out undrafted rookie Nick Mullens at quarterback. He threw for 262 yards, three touchdowns and no picks. The 49ers raked the Raiders 34-3.
And here’s where I have two words for you: Brett Hundley.
Despite McCarthy’s reputation as a great developer of quarterbacks, what quarterback has he ever developed? Certainly not Hundley. Scott Tolzien? Matt Flynn? Brian Brohm? Graham Harrell?
Traded to Seattle, Out of the league. Out of the league. Out of the league. Out of the league.
Shanahan strolled out with an undrafted rookie and had him ready to play. The Raiders do suck, but the 49ers won with a third-string quarterback by a huge margin.
Did the Packers win with Hundley by a huge margin last year? No. They barely won at all.
The Old Guard
What is even more frustrating is there are coaches who have been around for a long time who have adapted. I’m going to give you Sean Payton and Bill Belichick here.
If you saw the Saints play the Rams on Sunday, you probably noticed former Packer Taysom Hill.
Hill was a quarterback at BYU. He was primarily a running quarterback, but had a hell of a preseason throwing the ball for the Packers in 2017. They released him — another brilliant move by senile Uncle Ted, another turd who was kept around too long — and the Saints claimed him on waivers.
Hill is now the Saints kickoff returner. He plays on all the special teams units. Payton brings in Hill to throw the ball or play running back from time to time.
Can you imagine McCarthy doing anything like that?
It’s actually a good thing Hill isn’t on the Packers. He would just be sitting around, rotting away.
As for Grumblelord, I mean… can you believe it?
This curmudgeon not only gets a performance out of anyone, he isn’t afraid to pull out any sort of play from the playbook.
Belichick put former Vikings receiver and first-round bust Cordarrelle Patterson at running back on Sunday. He ran for 61 yards on 11 carries.
McCarthy couldn’t figure out how to use Ty Montgomery in the same situation in two years.
And then there’s the trick plays. Pitch to Julian Edelman, who throws to James White. Touchdown.
Edelman was a quarterback in college. Do you know who else was a quarterback in college at one time?
Would McCarthy ever call a play like that?
Just Like Ted
We were adamant — sometimes over the top — that the Packers needed to remove Ted Thompson as general manager years ago.
We’ve repeated it 100 times if we’ve said it once. Draft and develop doesn’t work if you draft for shit. And Thompson was tied to that. And he drafted for shit the last few years of his tenure.
“Ted was one of the best in football at running a draft,” one longtime NFL personnel executive said. “But he wasn’t in the same mindset those last few years.”
No. He wasn’t. He was long gone and it was obvious.
The Packers parted ways with Thompson two or three years too late. That’s on team president Mark Murphy, who wanted to be involved in the football operations and now is.
McCarthy is now one year overdue for a boot to the curb. If it becomes three then we can start talking about the Packers wasting Aaron Rodgers.
Actually, then we can start to talk about Mark Murphy — that Ginger Gap Tooth motherfucker — wasting Aaron Rodgers. He’ll waste all that talent by forcing Fat Mike on him for another year.
McCarthy is running an offense that was innovative in 2008. McVay, Shanahan, Payton and even Grumblelord have adapted.
McCarthy never will.
It won’t happen during the season. It better happen after the season.
The game has passed McCarthy by. He needs to go. He needs to go if the Packers are going to win another Super Bowl with Rodgers.
We’re not certain if Murphy has a pair, but he better fucking grow a pair and make this happen.