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Did the Panthers hire the wrong guy?

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#76 Cyberjag


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Posted 20 September 2013 - 09:05 AM

Basically, if you want to be a head coach, you are almost always going to have to be a coordinator first.  And as a coordinator, you will be more about strategy, game planning, and schemes.  As a head coach, you need to be more about people management--you rely on your coordinators for the strategy, game planning, and schemes. 


You get a guy like Rivera, he's great at the schemes. But when it comes to managing the players, he strikes me as too much a buddy.  He doesn't motivate them to perform at a peak level for three hours on Sunday, not until he gets scared for his own job and dispenses with the friendly BS.  And that's why he's a failure.  He's a Norv Turner clone--he can put together a unit with the best of them, but he can't lead people to perform in it.


It doesn't matter whether you have an OC or a DC as your coach.  You might assume that the DC will be more defensive minded, or the OC will be more about putting points on the board, but the reality is that the head coach simply needs to understand where his strengths are and go with them.  If you look at John Fox, he had Jake Delhomme, Steve Smith and a decent but not great running game.  Is it any wonder he relied on a defense with all those leaders to win games?  He wasn't allergic to scoring, he just knew he had a game manager and acted accordingly.  Yes, he's conservative, but in Denver he's got a star QB and it sure looks like he relies on him more often than not.  Bring back Kyle Orton to that team, and I bet his style begins to look a LOT like what we saw in Carolina.


In Rivera's first two years, we did some exciting things on offense.  That's because he had an offensive coordinator who was taking risks and opening things up.  Want to blame Chud for our record?  Chud didn't play prevent at Chicago, he didn't decide to punt in Atlanta, and he didn't give up 10 points in no time at all to Tampa at home.  Turn those three games around, and you have a 10-6 team and a playoff run.  Those decisions are all on Rivera, not Chud.  If you really want to get into the grit, you can ask why we were so flat at Tampa to open the season, and why we lost focus against Dallas.  That's what a head coach brings out--the best you have to offer, and Rivera doesn't do that.


I don't care what our next coach's background is.  By the numbers, more DCs than OCs are successful as HCs, but that doesn't mean you have to be one or the other to be good.  You just have to have the right motivational and people skills, and be secure enough to hire coordinators who know more than you do.  Find a guy like that, and we'll win a lot.

#77 methodtoll


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Posted 20 September 2013 - 09:17 AM

Worth remembering...

Bill Belichick cut his teeth as a DC. So did Pete Carroll.

Some of the league's most potent offenses - the Patriots, Falcons and Broncos to name a few - operate under defensive head coaches.

The point of a coaching search is to find the right guy. And yes, that guy can be a DC.

You took the words out of my mouth. Just because we have had poor success under Rivera doesn't mean we will have poor success under a guy like Zimmer or Fangio.

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#78 frash.exe


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Posted 20 September 2013 - 09:46 AM

Bill Belichick also had a lot of special teams coaching background and even a bit of offensive coaching as well. That's a lot different than someone who's been coaching defense the entire time

#79 Mr. Scot

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 09:51 AM

Mr Roto Rooter himself.

I can't even express how glad I am that we have an actual football guy in charge of these things now.