Panthers fire Reich after 1-10 start to 1st season
The Panthers fired head coach Frank Reich after an NFL-worst 1-10 start in his first season in charge, Carolina announced Monday.
The NFC South club also dismissed quarterbacks coach Josh McCown and assistant head coach/running backs coach Duce Staley.
Pressure had continued to mount on Reich after Carolina lost four straight games while the offense's woes worsened, scoring just 11.5 points per contest over that span.
The struggles of No. 1 pick Bryce Young also appeared to put Reich on the hot seat.
Carolina hired Reich under the assumption he'd be able to help Young transition into the NFL following impressive work with quarterbacks during his time in charge of the Indianapolis Colts.
But the former Alabama star has fallen far short of expectations, completing 62.1% of his passes for 1,683 yards and just nine touchdowns against eight interceptions.
The Panthers' offense as a whole has been among the NFL's worst amid Reich's inconsistent approach to play-calling. Reich initially called plays to start the year before ceding the duties to offensive coordinator Thomas Brown, only to take them back several weeks later.
"There's a heart-pounding disappointment in not hitting the marks that we needed to hit to keep this going and try to get it turned around," Reich told Scott Fowler of The Charlotte Observer. "It hurts me for the guys, the team, the coaches and the fans."
Reich also said there's no bad blood between himself and Panthers owner David Tepper despite his brief tenure.
"I want to convey that I have nothing but positive thoughts about Mr. Tepper. On a personal level, I saw a side of him that I deeply respect and care about," he said. "But the NFL is a meritocracy. It's not unconditional love.
"I understand from a professional standpoint Mr. Tepper is going to have certain standards that he expects to have met. I have no hard feelings, and my personal relationship with him was actually a real highlight of this short time."
Carolina picked Reich as Matt Rhule's replacement after a five-year stint with the Colts. The 61-year-old posted a 40-33-1 overall record in Indianapolis but was fired midway through the 2022 campaign after starting the year 3-5-1.
The Panthers' search for a new coach might be impacted by their lack of draft resources.
Carolina is currently slated to give away the No. 1 pick to the Chicago Bears after including its 2024 first-round selection in the trade to get Young. The NFC South club also surrendered its second-round pick in 2025 as part of the deal.
Special teams coordinator Chris Tabor will take over as the Panthers' interim coach for the remainder of the campaign, while Brown will take back play-calling duties and work alongside senior assistant Jim Caldwell.