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Joe Philbin: Winston Moss firing went beyond tweet

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  • By Around The NFL staff NFL.com
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Green Bay Packers interim coach Joe Philbin says a critical tweet by Winston Moss on Tuesday wasn't the only reason why the team decided to part ways with longtime assistant coach.

Philbin, with the support of Packers president Mark Murphy and general manager Brian Gutekunst, fired the associate head coach/linebackers coach for reasons that went beyond Moss' tweet, he said.

"It's never about one thing," Philbin said Wednesday, per ESPN's Rob Demovsky. "Again, I think it's important, as I said to the team, we've got to be professional, accountable, respectful and punctual. Those are the four things that we've got to do the next four weeks. And if we do all those things, we'll be in good shape.

"It wasn't about -- again, you're talking to a guy who's never tweeted in his life, doesn't even know what Twitter is -- so again, it's not about a tweet or anything like that. I just think the fit right now isn't where it needs to be."

Moss joined the Packers along with former head coach Mike McCarthy in 2006 from the New Orleans Saints' staff. Moss was a linebackers coach in Green Bay for 13 seasons and McCarthy's assistant head coach for the last 12. A former NFL linebacker of 11 seasons, Moss has spent 31 years in professional football.

Earlier Tuesday, a Twitter account associated with Moss expressed criticism of McCarthy's firing and suggested that Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers' play must be held accountable.

A short time later, Moss tweeted he had been fired:

Rodgers responded to Moss' tweet while speaking with reporters Wednesday.

"There's nobody that holds me more accountable than myself," Rodgers said, per ESPN.com. "But there's always been a great deal of accountability under Mike's program for the last 13 years."

Philbin wouldn't theorize on what point Moss was trying to make with the tweet.

"I think it's important obviously that everybody's on the same page, that we're all moving forward in the same direction," Philbin said. "As you know, Winston's an excellent football coach. I've known him a long time. Respect him; outstanding family man. So it wasn't an easy decision, but I just didn't feel like the fit right now was where it needs to be."

With Murphy and Gutekunst saying Philbin is a legitimate candidate to succeed McCarthy as coach in Green Bay, Philbin has a strong interest in doing everything he can to show what the Packers are fully capable of over the final month of the season.

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