The Carolina Panthers have made a significant change in their coaching staff, firing head coach Frank Reich after just 11 games, making it the shortest tenure for a head coach since 1978. The Panthers, with the worst record in the NFL at 1-10, made the decision to relieve Reich of his duties following their defeat to the Tennessee Titans in Week 12. Team owner David Tepper was in attendance at the game and was not pleased with the team’s performance.
It was announced that Special Teams Coordinator Chris Tabor will serve as the interim head coach, and offensive coordinator Thomas Brown will remain with the Panthers but will no longer be in charge of play-calling duties. Senior Assistant Jim Caldwell will take over as the play-caller, surprising fans who expected defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero to be named the interim head coach instead.
This marks the second consecutive season that the Panthers have fired a head coach. Tepper also made the decision to dismiss Matt Rhule five games into the previous season after a 1-4 start.
Reich, who previously coached the Indianapolis Colts, was hired by the Panthers based on his offensive expertise and his ability to work with young quarterbacks. However, after his disastrous stint with the Panthers, his overall coaching record stands at 41-43-1.
The decision to fire Reich comes after an extensive search by the Panthers to find a suitable head coach, and they had high hopes for Reich’s leadership. However, the move has not paid off, with the team struggling on the field and failing to meet expectations.
One of the contributing factors to the team’s struggles is the performance of rookie quarterback Bryce Young, whom Tepper insisted on making the #1 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, despite suggestions from Reich and other coaches to select C.J. Stroud from Ohio State instead. With Young at quarterback, the Panthers have had one of the poorest performing offenses in the NFL, averaging just 15.7 points per game.
The Panthers have also faced challenges due to the lack of offensive weapons and the trade of key players such as Christian McCaffrey and D.J. Moore. As a result, they have been the worst betting team in the NFL this season, with a 1-8-2 record against the point spread.
With Reich’s firing, the Panthers will now be looking to make changes and turn their season around, but it will be an uphill battle as they continue to struggle both on and off the field.