The Green Bay Packers have dominated the rivalry with the Dallas Cowboys in recent years, with and without Mike McCarthy.
McCarthy went 10-3 against Dallas as Green Bay's head coach. He has switched teams, but the outcomes remained the same, with Matt LaFleur's Packers defeating McCarthy's Cowboys in both meetings over the past two seasons. That includes a 48-32 humiliation of the Cowboys in last month's wild-card round.
The Packers-Cowboys rivalry is among the most historic in NFL history. Matchups between these two teams are rarely dull. There's drama, excitement, and unpredictability.
McCarthy will forever be tied to the Packers. He led this team to a Super Bowl and has a street named after him just down the road from Lambeau Field.
But his latest move takes the Packers-Cowboys rivalry up a level.
Cowboys hire longtime Packers rival Mike Zimmer as new defensive coordinator
McCarthy is bringing in a familiar face to run his defense. NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reports that the Cowboys are hiring Mike Zimmer as their new defensive coordinator.
There's a reason why many Packers fans pushed back on the idea of Zimmer replacing Joe Barry as the team's defensive coordinator. It never seemed likely that he would be near the top of Matt LaFleur's list.
"Did you forget how icy the LaFleur/Zimmer interactions were? That was never gonna happen," wrote The Leap's Peter Bukowski back in 2022.
One such icy interaction occurred in 2019, following the Packers' stunning NFC North-clinching victory over Zimmer's Minnesota Vikings. Zimmer could barely look at LaFleur as they shook hands after the game, and he quickly turned away and walked off.
LaFleur went 4-2 against Zimmer in their head-to-head meetings, and the Packers handed Zimmer a parting gift of a 37-10 defeat just a week before the Vikings parted ways with him.
Green Bay isn't scheduled to meet Dallas in the regular season, but another playoff showdown is possible. Both teams should be among the NFC's top contenders in 2024.
If and when these two teams meet again, the battle between LaFleur's offense and Zimmer's defense will enter a new chapter, adding another fascinating layer to the Packers-Cowboys rivalry.