The Green Bay Packers will bring back defensive coordinator Mike Pettine in 2020, ESPN reported Wednesday, news that emerged just hours after head coach Matt LaFleur was noncommittal about Pettine's future.
During Wednesday's season-ending press conference, LaFleur was asked about Pettine's status and said he was "still working through everything right now."
According to ESPN, LaFleur met with Pettine after the media session, and the two plan to move forward.
Pettine, whom LaFleur retained from Mike McCarthy's staff when he took over as head coach last January, will return for his third year with the Packers, who finished 18th in total defense (352.6 yards per game) and ninth in scoring defense (19.6 points per game) this season.
Green Bay's run defense collapsed in Sunday's season-ending loss in the NFC Championship Game to the San Francisco 49ers, who ran for 285 yards and surged to a 27-0 lead before winning 37-20.
On Wednesday, LaFleur lamented how his team played, saying he doesn't yet have answers and adding that the Packers were "definitely outcoached."
"That's something that I'm still trying to figure out right now as we speak," he said. "I mean, I don't understand that because you're there -- you have an opportunity to go to play in a Super Bowl. And for that to happen, it's extremely ... it's bothersome. We have to look at ourselves, everybody.
"I'm going to look inside of myself and see why weren't our players playing with their hair on fire. I think everybody in our organization has to do that."
Specific to the defense, LaFleur said it was "extremely disappointing" that his team couldn't stop the 49ers' run game despite knowing it was coming.
"I just didn't feel like we played with the same urgency, the same tenacity, the same toughness," he said. "We didn't set the edge the same as we had been earlier this season. It's disappointing because it's not like we didn't know what they were going to try to do. We knew exactly what they were going to try to do."
The Packers finished the regular season ranked 23rd in rushing yards allowed per game (120.1) and 24th in yards per carry (4.67).
Pettine, 53, has also coordinated defenses for the New York Jets (2009-12) and Buffalo Bills (2013) along with two years spent as head coach of the Cleveland Browns (2014-15).
--Field Level Media