NFL News: Ron Rivera Fired By Carolina Panthers After Nine Seasons As Head Coach
One team didn’t wait for the NFL season to end and for Black Monday to arrive so they could fire their head coach. On Tuesday afternoon, the Carolina Panthers decided to part ways with head coach Ron Rivera after nine seasons with the team. Until the season ends and a search for a new leader can come about, secondary coach Perry Fewell has been named the interim head coach of the 5-7 Panthers.
As reported by ESPN, Panthers owner David Tepper made the official announcement on Tuesday.
“I believe this is the best decision for the long-term success of our team,” Tepper said in a statement. “I have a great deal of respect for Ron and the contributions he has made to this franchise and to this community. I wish him the best. I will immediately begin the search for the next head coach of the Carolina Panthers.”
After starting the season 0-2, the Panthers placed an injured Cam Newton on Injured Reserve which led to Kyle Allen taking over. From that point on, the Panthers won four straight before the San Francisco 49ers handled them 51-13.
The next week, the Panthers bounced back against the Tennessee Titans before losing their next four games. This past Sunday, Carolina fell to 5-7 after losing to the Washington Redskins who had won only two games this entire season before their victory over the Panthers.
Breaking: The Carolina Panthers have parted ways with head coach Ron Rivera, the team announced Tuesday.
Secondary coach Perry Fewell has been named interim head coach. pic.twitter.com/ATgk7uvkKY
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) December 3, 2019
Offensive coordinator Norv Turner is going to move into the role of special assistant to the head coach while quarterbacks coach Scott Turner will transition into offensive coordinator. Tepper did say he will add executives to the team to “complement our current football staff.”
Throughout the course of Rivera’s time as head coach of the Panthers, the team has had some success. He finished his run as the winningest coach in team history with an overall record of 76-63-1 in the regular season and a 3-4 record in the postseason.
The Panthers even went to Super Bowl 50 under Rivera. He also was named the NFL Coach of the Year on two occasions.
Tepper has only been the owner of the Panthers for the last two seasons after purchasing the team from former owner Jerry Richardson. During that time, Rivera has guided Carolina to a record of 12-16 which has led Tepper to look in a different direction for the head coaching position.
With only four games left in the 2019 NFL regular season, the Panthers have not been mathematically eliminated from playoff contention yet, but they’re close.
It is quite possible that Rivera could coach in the league again, as a number of other head coaching positions will likely have vacancies after the season is over.