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Packers hire McCarthy as head coach

GREEN BAY, Wis. (Jan. 12, 2006) -- Mike McCarthy was hired as coach of the Green Bay Packers, who hope the San Francisco 49ers' offensive coordinator can revive a team coming off its worst season in 15 years.

McCarthy, a former Packers assistant, received a three-year deal. He replaces Mike Sherman, who was fired Jan. 2 after a 4-12 season.

General manager Ted Thompson touted McCarthy as someone who could return the franchise to a championship level.

"We feel very good about our future going forward," Thompson said.

And McCarthy said that would happen.

"There will be an unconditional commitment from Ted and myself to bring the world championship back to Green Bay," McCarthy said.

The 42-year-old McCarthy spent last season as the San Francisco 49ers' offensive coordinator and was the Packers' quarterbacks coach in 1999 -- a forgettable 8-8 season under Ray Rhodes.

Brett Favre struggled in his only year with McCarthy, throwing 23 interceptions to 22 touchdowns. But Favre played much of the season with a sprained thumb on his throwing hand. Favre has not committed to playing next season, and has hinted that the team's offseason moves would play a role in his decision.

McCarthy was the New Orleans Saints' offensive coordinator from 2000-04 before going to San Francisco. The 49ers finished 4-12, ranking last in the league in yards per game (224.2) and 30th in scoring (14.9 points per game).

Thompson also interviewed Cleveland offensive coordinator Maurice Carthon, New York Giants defensive coordinator Tim Lewis, Dallas offensive coordinator Sean Payton, San Diego defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, Chicago defensive coordinator Ron Rivera and the Packers' current defensive coordinator, Jim Bates.

It was not clear whether Bates will remain in his job under McCarthy.

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