Win $500 in CFB Bowl Pick'em
Enter for Free in Our App

What Should Bettors Expect from Packers after Firing Mike McCarthy?

Dec 05, 2018 9:22 PM EST
  • The Green Bay Packers fired coach Mike McCarthy after a 20-17 Week 13 loss to the Arizona Cardinals.
  • Green Bay is a 6-point favorite against the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday (1 p.m. ET, FOX).
  • Using Bet Labs, we analyzed how NFL teams perform after firing their head coach.

The Green Bay Packers fired Mike McCarthy Sunday night following a 20-17 loss to the Arizona Cardinals. This is the first time in the 98-year history of the franchise that the Packers have fired a head coach in-season.

During the Mike McCarthy-era, the Packers had a 135-85-2 record including postseason games, reached the playoffs nine times in 13 seasons and won a Super Bowl.

Bettors will remember McCarthy fondly as Green Bay went 123-92-7 (57.5%) against the spread (ATS) with an 11-6-1 ATS record in the playoffs.

On Sunday, the Packers host the Atlanta Falcons (1 p.m. ET, FOX) in their first game without McCarthy. Green Bay opened as a 4-point favorite, but sharp action has moved the line to Packers -6.

The pros think Aaron Rodgers & Co. will play better without McCarthy, but are they right?

To answer that question, we turn to the Bet Labs database. McCarthy is the 24th coach to be fired in-season since 2003. Here are how the previous 23 teams did in the game following their coach’s dismissal:

On average, teams have been 5.5-point underdogs in their first game after a coach gets fired. These teams have gone 9-14 (39%) straight up (SU). That doesn’t sound impressive until you consider the team’s record before letting their coach go.

Combined, the 23 teams had a 60-165-1 (26.7%) record before the coach was relieved of his duties.

The improved win rate leads to a profitable ATS record. Teams that fired their coach in-season have gone 12-11 ATS in their following game. Prior to the coaching change, these teams had gone 84-139-3 (37.7%) ATS.

Teams that fire their coaches in-season maintain this level of improved play for the remainder of the season. After firing a coach, NFL teams have gone 49-85 (36.6%) SU and 67-65-2 (50.8%) ATS.

It is reasonable to theorize that a team would play better once an embattled coach is removed. With the dark cloud lifted from an organization, players are free to concentrate on football without the distractions associated with a coach in jeopardy of losing his job.

It is also possible that the betting market overreacts to coaching changes, which leads to value on teams that make in-season moves.

The Packers are currently 4-7-1 ATS this season. With four games left on the schedule, history suggests the team will finish with a .500 ATS record down the stretch.

Credit:

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Green Bay Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy

Follow John Ewing on Twitter
@johnewing

Top Stories

Download the App
SCHEDULE
OPEN
CURR
# BETS
56.5
-3.5
53.5
-3.5
-6.5
42.5
-6
41.5
44.5
-4
45.5
-3
44
-3
43.5
-2.5
47.5
-8.5
46.5
-8
46.5
-5
45
-6
38
PK
38.5
-2.5
46.5
-3.5
46
-3
44
-9
44
-9
44
-9.5
44.5
-7
47
-3
47
-3
36
-8.5
36
-7
-5.5
44.5
-5
44
-1
52.5
-1.5
52.5
54.5
-9.5
53.5
-9
-7
54
-6
51.5

Free Action Newsletter

The best sports betting trends, insights and news - condensed into a two-minute read.
Sign up today, thank us tomorrow.

Follow Us On Social