Packers defensive coordinator Mike Pettine came to Green Bay to be part of Mike McCarthy’s coaching staff, but neither McCarthy’s departure during the 2018 season nor the hiring of Matt LaFleur to replace him gave Pettine cause to leave the organization.
Pettine will continue running the defense in 2019 and said it was an “easy decision” to return when he spoke to the media from Packers headquarters on Monday. Pettine had LaFleur’s brother on his coaching staff with the Browns and said he felt “common ground” with the new head coach despite not working together in the past.
The defensive staff has seen some changes with linebackers coach Patrick Graham leaving to become the Dolphins defensive coordinator and defensive passing game coordinator Joe Whitt departing for a job in Cleveland. He said that he had no issues with Whitt, but LaFleur wanted to bring in some of his own people by way of explaining the change.
During his own press conference on Monday, LaFleur noted that the Packers have a young staff for the most part and that he will look to Pettine for advice about some head coaching matters because Pettine once held the job in Cleveland. Pettine said he has a “thick book” of things to share from that experience and that he’s happy to share them with LaFleur as they go through their first year on the same sideline.