The Carolina Panthers just can’t seem to figure it out. The team just announced that they will be firing head coach Frank Reich along with numerous other staff members after the team fell to 1-10 on the season.
Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper is starting to gain a reputation as an impatient owner who is desperate to see his franchise get back to winning football. Unfortunately, he’s just not giving people enough time to build that culture back up. Not to mention that the roster simply isn’t good enough to win football games right now. Everybody seemed to know that this team was one that needed time. They drafted Bryce Young with the number one overall pick but gave him awful circumstances. He has a horrible offensive line, a very mediocre and inexplosive receiving core, and a backfield that isn’t exactly consistent. On top of that, Reich was fired last season, which raised eyebrows on why he would be hired for this job right after that.
Regardless, the decision to fire him felt rushed and out of place. He was fired after just 11 games, making it one of the fastest firings of all time. In his place, special team’s coordinator Chris Tabor will get a promotion, while Jim Caldwell will move into a special advising role on the team. Many wondered why Caldwell wasn’t given the interim head coaching job, though it appears that he simply didn’t want it and preferred the role he had beforehand.
The writing was kind of on the wall for Reich to get hired a few weeks ago anyways, for better or for worse. He was calling plays for an offense that looked like the worst group in football to start the year. Then, he handed those play calling duties over to the offensive coordinator for a few weeks, and the results were the exact same. In light of that, Reich likely knew that his job was on the line, so he took play calling responsibilities back, once again yielding the same results.
If the Panthers truly want to get out of the basement in the NFC South division, they’ll need to be patient with whoever they chose to coach this team. They’ve consistently hired and fired coaches the last few seasons, which isn’t something that will help them turn it around. They need to hire a guy they think can instill a culture similar to what Dan Campbell did to the Detroit Lions. Then, and only then, can they begin to build a roster good enough to compete for a Super Bowl. The coach comes first in this hunt for wins, and the roster construction can wait until that initial choice is made.
Tepper did announce after firing Reich that Bryce Young has the full confidence of the team moving forward, so at least he’s not jumping the gun on him yet. Hopefully Bryce and the rest of this team can pull themselves together down the stretch of the season. After all, they don’t even have a first-round draft pick in 2024 thanks to the trade-up to get Young. A trade also sent their best offensive weapon, DJ Moore, over to the Bears as well.