On Monday, Phillips became the fifth coach to interview to replace Mike Sherman as the Packers' head coach but none have known Packers general manager Ted Thompson for 30 years like Phillips.
"His interview with the Packers went very well," said a league source. "He and Sean Payton are the two top choices for the head coaching job there."
The Pack are expected to interview three more candidates in the coming week but Phillips has clearly emerged from the current pack as one of the favorites, with Niners offensive coordinator Mike McCarthy a darkhorse..
His loss would leave the Chargers shorthanded on the defensive side. He has led the team to a top five finish in rushing defense the last two years, including the top ranked in 2005, and has steadily improved the state of a defense that was in disarray before the Bolts switched to the 3-4.
The Chargers have told the agent for Ted Cottrell that he would be a welcome addition if Phillips bolt.
Ironically, Cottrell was a defensive coordinator for Phillips in Buffalo from 1998 to 2000.
New Vikings head coach Brad Childress fired Cottrell this week, days after taking the helm.
"He said he's going in a different direction," Cottrell told Minnesota reporters. "I just have to move on."
Under the guidance of Cottrell this past season, Minnesota ranked 21st in total defense. He was the Vikings' defensive coordinator since 2004.