Cowboys coach McCarthy makes first return 'home' to Green Bay

Super Bowl-winning coach Mike McCarthy returns to Green Bay for the first time, as his Dallas Cowboys look to add more misery to his former quarterback Aaron Rodgers' poor NFL season.

McCarthy led the Packers to their fourth and most recent Super Bowl success in 2010, with Rodgers the MVP in a victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers in Dallas.

The 59-year-old Pittsburgh native has the second most wins in history as a Packers head coach, behind Curly Lambeau, and although his popularity waned towards the end of his time in Wisconsin, he is expected to be given a warm welcome.

"I hope that the fans show a lot of gratitude and appreciation for his 13 seasons and a championship and a lot of great memories over the years," Rodgers told The Athletic this week.

"He’s got a street named for him. That's pretty special. But I hope that the fans give him the reception he deserves," he added.

Sunday's game matters for both teams and the clashes between the two are rich in history, but for McCarthy it will likely be an emotional occasion.

His wife, Jessica, is from Green Bay and his two daughters were born in the town and he maintains close friendships with people connected to the Packers organization.

McCarthy handled the transition from Brett Favre to Rodgers at quarterback and was rewarded with some memorable seasons, making the post-season for eight straight years and reaching the NFC Championship game on three occasions.

There were reports of rancour between coach and quarterback towards the end of McCarthy's reign with the Packers, which concluded in 2018, but he insists that his relationship with Rodgers remains strong.

"I have nothing but love and gratitude for him," McCarthy said. "Just a whole lot of appreciation, not only for him but for all the players, the team that we had there. We had some great times."

Rodgers isn't having a great time at the moment, however. The Packers are 3-6 and have lost five games in a row, their most recent a 15-9 defeat to the struggling Detroit Lions in which the quarterback threw three interceptions.

McCarthy is taking nothing for granted despite the Cowboys' enjoying a 6-2 record that is the joint third-best in the NFC.

"This is going to be a tough game," he said. "No one's talked about that yet. Call it 'wounded animal,' whatever you want."

The Buffalo Bills (6-2) could be without their in-form quarterback Josh Allen for Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings (7-1).

Allen, who has thrown for 2,403 yards and 19 touchdowns, missed training on Wednesday and Thursday due to a sprained right elbow and former Vikings quarterback Case Keenum is on stand-by.

The NFL's first game in Germany sees Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers take on the Seattle Seahawks at the Allianz Arena, home of Bundesliga team Bayern Munich.

"The place is gonna be rocking and if it's anything like what I see in those German Bundesliga games this is gonna be one of the epic games that we’ve ever played in. So I’m super excited," Brady said.

The NFL's only unbeaten team, the Philadelphia Eagles (8-0) host the Washington Commanders (4-5) on Monday.

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