Coaching search continues

Thompson meets with McCarthy on Sunday; four others in line for interviews

General manager Ted Thompson's search for a new coach of the Green Bay Packers hit the halfway point Sunday. Thompson has interviewed four potential candidates to take over for Mike Sherman, and four more are scheduled to be interviewed this week.

Thompson is scheduled to meet with San Diego Chargers defensive coordinator Wade Phillips today in Green Bay. Phillips was Thompson's position coach with Houston in 1976. Thompson was a linebacker with the Oilers from 1975-84. Phillips' father, Bum Phillips, has been a longtime friend of Thompson.

Phillips, 58, has been an NFL head coach for the Denver Broncos, Buffalo Bills, New Orleans (interim) and Atlanta Falcons (interim coach)during his 29-year NFL career.

Thompson met with San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator Mike McCarthy on Sunday. McCarthy, 42, was Green Bay's quarterback's coach in 1999 under Ray Rhodes and knows the West Coast offense. Saints quarterback Aaron Brooks had his best years under McCarthy and struggled this year after McCarthy left to join the 49ers.

Prior to Sunday's meeting with McCarthy, Thompson interviewed Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Ron Rivera on Saturday, Cleveland Browns offensive coordinator Maurice Carthon on Friday and Dallas Cowboys assistant head coach/passing game coordinator Sean Payton on Thursday.

Thompson is scheduled to interview Pittsburgh Steelers assistant head coach/offensive line coach Russ Grimm and New York Giants defensive coordinator Tim Lewis on either Tuesday or Wednesday. Thompson also plans to interview Packers defensive coordinator Jim Bates on Thursday of this week.

Aside from Phillips and Bates, it appears that Thompson is targeting an up-and-coming NFL head coaching candidate with NFL experience. It is possible that Thompson will select a coach by the end of this week.


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