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Mike McCarthy on how he wants his players to remember him: I hope they knew me as a husband and a father

Mike McCarthy is still not happy about his exit as head coach of the Green Bay Packers. He served as the Packers' head coach from 2006 through the 12th game of their 2018 season, a 20-17 home loss to the Arizona Cardinals, dropping the club to 4-7-1 on the year and making him the first Green Bay head coach to leave mid-season since Ray McLean in 1958.

"It couldn't have been handled any worse," McCarthy said.

Though the end was ugly and bitter, the 12 years that proceeded it were pretty darn great. For a 10-year run from 2007-16, Green Bay was the NFC's most consistent franchise, winning 106 games with nine playoff appearances, six NFC North titles, a 15-1 season and a Super Bowl XLV victory.

McCarthy is one of three Packers coaches to win a Lombardi Trophy -- and one of them bears the trophy's name.

In his first interview since the firing, ESPN.com asked McCarthy how he wants his Packers players to remember their time with him. Here's what he said:

The word that comes to mind is drive. There's a consistency component to it, a commitment component to it and the reality that everything we did and talked about was about winning. Every conversation, every drill I tried never to waste any time. Drive was my daily focus. But I hope, God, I hope, that every single one of them knows me as a husband and as a father. I used to share stories about my family all the time. Hell, there was one season when the focus of my whole Saturday night talks were stories about growing up in my old Pittsburgh neighborhood. I always tried to give those guys a part of me. We talked about how generations of players changed, but so do coaches. Over 13 years, I know I grew as a husband and as a father. I changed, and I hope that was reflected not just in what I did but in who I am.

Still only 55, McCarthy is spending a year-in-residence in a football lab that DVSport shipped to his Green Bay home, with full plans on coaching an NFL team in 2020.

"But personally, this is a very important year for me and my family. Green Bay is our home, always will be," he said. "My career, the ups and downs of everything that's gone on in football, will never define us as a family. Making sure home base is in order, trying to create the opportunities for our children to grow and prepare them for life ahead is where we are and who we are. Family first, no matter what logo we're wearing. As a coach, your season is defined by wins and losses. This year is about family moments and how many family moments put us in position to grow. That's my scoreboard."

Read the full interview here.

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