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NFC North Rundown: Division is buzzing about the firing of Mike McCarthy

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Many coaching changes around the division are pending with four games to play, but the Packers became the first to get the ball rolling.

NFL: Arizona Cardinals at Green Bay Packers Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

To sum up the divisional race in week 13 of the NFL season, the Chicago Bears lost no ground in the NFC North title hunt despite their first loss since October. But that loss took a back seat to the news that shortly followed on Sunday: the Green Bay Packers’ firing of Mike McCarthy.

All around the division, there is much being said about the Packers’ former head coach, who was relieved of duties after the team’s 20-17 loss to the lowly Arizona Cardinals. After 13 seasons and a 125-77-2 record, McCarthy’s legacy around the division is that of a productive head coach that became a nemesis for the Packers’ rivals. One such competitor went as far to label it a “mistake” in wake of Sunday’s news.

However, McCarthy may be the first domino to fall for NFC North coaching shake-ups, at least since the Lions’ firing of Joe Marciano as special teams coach earlier this season. A number of names are on the bubble, while some are listed as potential names to watch for the Packers’ open position.

Storylines involving coaches make up today’s divisional rundown.

Chicago Bears (8-4)

Lsot 30-27 at New York Giants; Next vs. Los Angeles Rams

Chicago Bears picked right week to lose for first time since October

Bears Head Coach Matt Nagy is suddenly the second-longest tenured coach in the division and one of his assistants could be a candidate for Green Bay.

Will Packers take a look at Fitzgerald?

The Chicago Tribune examines the relationship between Mark Murphy and Pat Fitzgerald from their time together at Northwestern.

Divisional shake-up: Packers fire Mike McCarthy

Although it may not be surprising that McCarthy was fired, the former head coach had an outstanding record against the Packers’ rival to the south.


Detroit Lions (4-8)

Lost 30-16 vs. Los Angeles Rams; Next at Arizona

Packers should look to Josh McDaniels, Jim Caldwell as top coach candidates

While not from the Detroit local media, this article mentions a familiar name in that area as a head coaching candidate for Green Bay and his experience with established quarterbacks.

Detroit Lions: Should Matt Patricia be on the hot seat?

First-year coach or not, Patricia is entering a critical prove-it stretch of the season with Detroit owning a 4-8 record.

Rams assistant seen as coordinator material as heat builds in Detroit

After firing their special teams coach a few weeks ago, the Lions could very well begin searching for their next Offensive Coordinator soon while their head coach’s seat warms up.


Minnesota Vikings (6-5-1)

Lost 24-10 at New England; Next at Seattle

Mike Zimmer on Packers firing Mike McCarthy: ‘I think it’s a mistake’

On top of calling it “sad,” Zimmer was not fond of the Packers’ decision to sever ties with a divisional coaching counterpart.

A dozen games into Vikings season, Mike Zimmer and John DeFilippo still not on same page

Another first-year coordinator could be in jeopardy of losing his job after a shaky season if one reads between the lines of Zimmer’s last post-game press conference.

With McCarthy out in Green Bay, will Vikings’ DeFilippo be a candidate?

Despite frustration and dissatisfaction over DeFilippo’s offense in Minnesota this season, some wonder if he will be a Packer head coaching target.