McCarron and Faxon lead the team of Raymond Floyd and Stewart Cink by one shot. Lee Janzen and Joe Durant, John Daly and Frank Lickliter, and Jeff Maggert and Mike Hulbert all shot 6-under 66s at the Tiburon Golf Club.
Course designer and tournament host Greg Norman teamed with regular partner Steve Elkington to shoot 4-under 68. They won this event in 1998.
Faxon and McCarron each won on the PGA Tour this season. Faxon captured the Sony Open in Hawaii in January, while McCarron won the BellSouth Classic three months later.
This weeks $2 million tournament opened with alternate-shot play, and goes to better ball on Saturday and concludes with Sunday's scramble.
The winners will share $450,000.
Full-field scores from the Franklin Templeton Shootout