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Frank Reich’s short-lived tenure puts him in rare company

Admin By Admin Nov28,2023

On Monday, the Carolina Panthers fired head coach Frank Reich

A stunning stat highlights the ineptitude of his short-lived tenure.

Per Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer, Reich’s 11-game run with the Panthers was the shortest for an NFL head coach in 45 years. ESPN Stats and Information notes there have only been six head coaches since the merger who didn’t finish their first season with the team. Three came over the last three seasons (Urban Meyer, Nathaniel Hackett and Reich).

It’s surprising the 61-year-old flopped in Carolina. Unlike Hackett and Meyer, he had some previous success. From 2018-22, he served as Indianapolis HC and logged a 40-33-1 record, leading the Colts to two playoff appearances. 

However, moving on from Reich is the right call. The Panthers (1-10) have significant issues on both sides of the ball, ranking 29th in the NFL in points scored (15.7) and 30th in points allowed (26.5).

Rookie quarterback Bryce Young, the first overall pick of the 2023 NFL Draft, is floundering. In 10 games, the 22-year-old has completed 61.7 percent of his passes for 1,877 yards, nine TDs, eight interceptions and a below-average 32 QBR, 29th in the league.

Young’s lack of development didn’t bode well for the HC, as Carolina dealt two first-rounders and star wide receiver DJ Moore to move up in the draft and select the 2021 Heisman winner.

Reich failed to meet expectations, but Panthers owner David Tepper must do a better job. Per Breer, Tepper has fired three HCs in-season (Ron Rivera, Matt Rhule and Reich) since he bought the team in 2018. Under Tepper, the franchise has the league’s second-worst record (30-63).      

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