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Team: Carolina Panthers

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Panthers DC Sean McDermott said they'll "experiment more" with the 3-4 defense in 2013.
"Would we like to do more? Absolutely. How much of it? We'll see," said McDermott. The main reasoning behind the desire is that Carolina has four quality linebackers in Luke Kuechly, Jon Beason, Thomas Davis, and James Anderson. "We've got to get all of those guys on the field," McDermott added. Mike Clay of Pro Football Focus, and Rotoworld contributor, said the Panthers ran zero base 3-4 snaps in 2012, playing 39 snaps in the 3-3-5 nickel defense. Fri, Feb 1, 2013 11:55:00 AM

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Panthers hired Al Holcomb as linebackers coach.

Holcomb is the first Panthers position coach hired in the past two weeks who did not have previous ties to the organization. After over a decade in the college ranks, Holcomb joined the Giants' staff in a quality control capacity in 2009. He spent the last two seasons as a defensive assistant.
Sat, Jan 26, 2013 10:41:00 AM

New Panthers GM Dave Gettleman had "no input" in owner Jerry Richardson's decision to retain head coach Ron Rivera, and Gettleman and Rivera hadn't even met until last week.

Rivera attended Gettleman's introductory press conference Tuesday, but only spoke for "about a minute" before being "shuffled out of the room." It's fair to wonder if there might be tension between Gettleman and Rivera because of the awkward situation. Most GMs get to pick their coaches. "I don't have a list of coaches in my back pocket," Gettleman said. "I have no interest in that."
Tue, Jan 15, 2013 10:55:00 PM

The Panthers will retain Ron Rivera as their head coach.

Rivera and owner Jerry Richardson met face-to-face on Saturday to determine the head coach's fate. After a shaky start to the season, the Panthers went 6-3 in their last nine games, a fact which certainly played into Rivera's favor. Rivera has two years left on his original $11 million deal. There's no official word yet on Rivera's assistants, but it's expected that offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski will also be retained, which is positive news for Cam Newton. Newton will enter his third season in the same offensive system in 2013. The Panthers will begin interviewing GM candidates on Monday.
Sat, Jan 5, 2013 12:51:00 PM

ESPN's John Clayton reported on SportsCenter Friday that Ron Rivera is likely to stay on as Panthers head coach.

We're often leery of posting Clayton's stories because he relies heavily on dot-connecting at this point in his reporting career, but he seems to genuinely have some information this time around. "People inside the building think that (Rivera) is going to be able to stay," Clayton said. Rivera and owner Jerry Richardson are meeting on Saturday, which will essentially be a job interview for the incumbent head coach. The Panthers are tentatively expected to hire Giants exec Dave Gettleman as general manager, and apparently he'll be on board. Or, Richardson will at least strongly encourage him to be on board.
Fri, Jan 4, 2013 07:13:00 PM

Panthers owner Jerry Richardson is "clearly agonizing" over the decision of whether to retain head coach Ron Rivera.

Richardson and Rivera are meeting on Saturday face-to-face, and Rivera's fate will be determined once Richardson hires a general manager. In 2012, Carolina won its final four games and finished 7-9. If Rivera were kept, he would also figure to retain offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski, giving face-of-the-franchise Cam Newton continuity. It's going to be a very tough call for Richardson.
Fri, Jan 4, 2013 12:53:00 PM

Panthers coach Ron Rivera is scheduled to meet with owner Jerry Richardson on Saturday.

Rivera's fate is in limbo while consultant Ernie Accorsi interviews candidates for the general manager position. We wouldn't expect Richardson to make a decision on Rivera's future during or immediately after the weekend meeting.
Thu, Jan 3, 2013 01:27:00 PM

Updating a previous item, NFL Network's Michael Lombardi is now reporting on Around the League Live that coach Ron Rivera will remain "in limbo" until the Panthers finalize their general manager search.

As we suspected, the decision will not be made on Monday. Owner Jerry Richardson isn't expected to sit down with Rivera until Wednesday at the earliest. Rivera may ultimately be relieved of his duties, but that should be at the discretion of the next GM. While Rivera has earned another season in Carolina with the NFL's No. 8 defense, an improving Cam Newton, and a competitive team in the face of a slew of injuries, it's only fair that the next GM gets to hand-pick his own head coach.
Mon, Dec 31, 2012 11:10:00 AM

NFL Network's Michael Lombardi reports the Panthers are expected to fire coach Ron Rivera on Monday.

It's hardly a surprise that owner Jerry Richardson would offer his next GM a clean slate with the coaching staff, but we question the "Monday" portion of Lombardi's report. Rivera is scheduled to give his weekly press conference Monday morning, and Richardson isn't even town. The Panthers have been competitive in every game but two while closing the season in strong fashion for a second straight year.
Mon, Dec 31, 2012 10:49:00 AM

Panthers coach Ron Rivera is expected to appear for his regularly-scheduled press conference on Monday.

Owner Jerry Richardson isn't even in the building on Monday. Beat writer Steve Reed "highly doubts" we will hear anything on Rivera's future Monday -- and perhaps for the rest of the week. The Panthers won five of their last six games, but much will depend on the next GM. Giants college scouting director Marc Ross and senior pro personnel analyst Dave Gettleman are expected to be interviewed for that job, along with interim GM Brandon Beane.
Mon, Dec 31, 2012 08:48:00 AM

Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports "hears" that Panthers head coach Ron Rivera is "safe" and will not be fired after the season.

Cole follows that up by saying that "there's more talk" that interim general manager Brandon Beane will get the full-time job. This report goes against what NFL Network's Michael Lombardi said earlier in the week when he said Rivera would "certainly" be fired on Monday, but we'd trust Cole's source more than Lombardi's personal opinion. Carolina enters Week 17 having won four-of-five games, and the team has a chance to finish at 7-9 should they beat the Saints on Sunday. Rivera has the Panthers defense sitting at No. 8 in the league, and after a slow start, Cam Newton has been stellar over the past month or two, getting the offense up to a respectable No. 17 in the NFL.
Sun, Dec 30, 2012 09:27:00 AM

Appearing on Showtime's Inside the NFL, NFL Network's Michael Lombardi said he thinks Panthers head coach Ron Rivera will "certainly" be fired on Monday.

Lombardi didn't cite any sources, so take the report with a grain of salt, but Rivera's status heading into the offseason has certainly been in question, especially after Carolina started the season 2-8. The Panthers have rallied to win four-of-five and now sit at 6-9 heading into Week 17. After finishing 2011 with a 6-10 record, Rivera will, at the very least, match that mark, but owner Jerry Richardson may deem that it's not good enough. Aside from blowout losses in Week 3 and Week 10 to the Giants and Broncos, the Panthers have been in every game. Carolina ranks No. 17 in total offense and No. 8 in total defense in 2012. The team has been linked to Oregon's Chip Kelly in recent months.
Wed, Dec 26, 2012 10:30:00 PM

Panthers coach Ron Rivera acknowledged that his job is on the line in the second half of the season.

Owner Jerry Richardson had a sit-down meeting with Rivera, making it clear that the team would have to play better. "The biggest thing is we have to be trending up. We have to be showing that we are improving as a football team," said Rivera. "Whether that's a specific number of wins, I don't know. To some degree, it's about perception. People have to see that we're competing." The Panthers have been competitive in all but one game, belying their 2-6 record.
Mon, Nov 5, 2012 07:40:00 AM

Panthers hired former Eagles defensive coordinator Sean McDermott for the same position in Carolina.

McDermott had interviews set up with the Panthers and Broncos less than 24 hours after he was canned in Philly. It's an indication that he remains highly respected in league circles despite being the fall-guy for the Eagles' woeful red-zone defense in 2010. McDermott will take on more of an overseer role in Carolina with head coach Ron Rivera handling play-calling duties. He's replacing Ron Meeks, who accepted a demotion to secondary coach.
Mon, Jan 17, 2011 04:35:00 PM

League sources tell Darin Gantt of the Charlotte Observer that former defensive coordinator Ron Meeks will take a demotion to become the Panthers' secondary coach.

Ron Rivera will take over play-calling duties, while Meeks will be responsible for turning around a mediocre pass defense. The fact that Meeks is willing to take a demotion says a lot about the current uncertainty in the NFL. There are much fewer job openings than were previously expected.
Sat, Jan 15, 2011 10:07:00 AM

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