Ron Rivera’s future remains up in the air

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As the Panthers try to end a six-game losing streak that wiped out a strong 6-2 start to the season, many league observers are trying to figure out what will happen to coach Ron Rivera.

Already on the job for eight years, Rivera now works for a new boss, and no one knows what owner David Tepper will do, now that a promising season has fallen apart.

Some think Tepper will make a change. Some think he’ll give Rivera another year. Yes, Rivera has two years left on his deal, but it would be peanuts in comparison to the purchase price for Tepper to pay Rivera to walk away.

With two games left and the Panthers clinging to mathematical postseason possibilities, it would be premature for Tepper to make a decision now. But he surely has considered his various options, regardless of whether Tepper pulls the trigger.

As it will be for every other team contemplating a coaching change, the final two games will be a factor. The Panthers could make the playoffs. Even if they don’t, they could finish strong with a pair of wins, ending up at .500. That necessarily would create a different vibe entering the offseason.

Another big factor will be whether Tepper can upgrade. Rivera quietly has become one of the best coaches in the league. Before giving up on a guy who is closing in on a decade of experience and who has taken the team to a Super Bowl, Tepper had better be sure he’ll end up with someone better — especially since many believe the Buccaneers are poised to pounce on Rivera, if he becomes available.

21 responses to “Ron Rivera’s future remains up in the air

  1. The writing was on the wall when Scam wouldn’t jump on that super bowl fumble. It’s all about him. Carolina will never make it over the hill with him.

  2. Personally, I think Riveria would be a good fit in GB.

    GB doesn’t need some offensive guru/wiz kid.
    Rodgers is in charge of the offense.

    They need a defensive type of coach to improve the defense.

  3. Scam you say, that’s funny, Ron Rivera is the biggest scam artist since Jeff Fisher.
    Cam Newton has carried Ron Rivera for 8 years. The media loves Ron Rivera and his great defensive schemes, lips planted on cheeks, just like Jeff Fisher. Ron Rivera has run Cam Newton into the ground just like Jeff Fisher did Steve McNair.

  4. Ron Rivera is a failure, he should be a coach for the Lions.

  5. You can have a player statistically look good on paper yet actually be holding his team back. For example, I think OBJ holds the Giants back because he demands the ball so much; his demands dictate the flow of the game and basically force an OC into playing checkers instead of chess.

    That’s what you have with Cam Newton. By all appearances he is a good QB that on paper has performed well. However, I think Cam has accountability problems… I think, to him, if they fail as a team it is in spite of him. Likewise, his decision the other night to waste precious time after a first down instead of lead his team in the huddle is indiciative of this. I don’t think he practices and works very hard because he doesn’t think he needs to, he thinks his God-given talent alone is enough.

    If you want to fix the Panthers you keep your coach and find another QB. New QB might feel like a step backwards on paper but mindset and attitude trumps everything else.

  6. I think there will be a coaching change. Tepper heads a major Hedge Fund. Those who don’t perform are fired quickly in the hedge fund world. I’d expect the same culture now that Tepper is in charge.

  7. GB doesn’t need some offensive guru/wiz kid.
    Rodgers is in charge of the offense.

    When offense is good: It’s all Rodgers, he’s the best ever!
    When offense is bad: (insert name of coach) doesn’t know what he’s doing! What an idiot!

    Are we done with this narrative yet? Rivera may be a good fit in Green Bay because he is an above average coach. The blanket statement “Rodgers is in charge of the offense” is kinda stupid, right? No offensive coordinator? No input from the head coach? Who would the fan base blame when Green Bay doesn’t make the playoffs?

  8. Over the course of Rivera’s career as HC of the Panther he has been on AVG a .500 Head Coach without much success outside of the one run the team in Cam’s MVP 2015 season , getting wax’d in the SB by a one arm’d Peyton Manning lead Broncos team. Perhaps it’s time Tepper does move on , personally i’d love to see Carolina higher a bright offensive minded HC who can get the most of Cam & design their offense around Cam Newton and what he does well… If they could find the right offensive HC, Newton is still young enough to where they could come up with an almost impossible to stop offense building it around Cam and the run game.

  9. I know it’s a new ownership group, but Tepper would be wise to keep him. It’s slim pickings in the HC market. Carolina has already gone through the bumps his first couple of years when he seemed in over his head, and he’s a solid above average HC now. His halftime adjustments still leave a bit to be desired, but he’s not alone in that in this league and a new guy wouldn’t be guaranteed to do them either.

    For the guy trying to convince people that Newton has held this team back, you do realize that Carolina had the best record at home as a franchise coming into this year during his tenure next to some guy named Tom Brady, don’t you? Sure you do. That doesn’t happen by accident. Newton’s health needs to be his number one priority.

  10. Going for two to win the game is loved by fans and media when it works, and a fair coin flip for those who are organized for the moment. But going for two with a minute-plus to go in game can only guarantee a loss, not a win. Thus the odds of that decision working for the best are greatly different than going for two with five seconds to go. Game managers who don’t understand this basic reality in year eight are out of their element and their teams are at a huge disadvantage.

  11. Respectable leader who is very poor game manager is clueless when it comes to when to use a challenge. But this bizarrely is the case with a dozen other head coaches in NFL.

  12. He’s got 2 years left on his current deal so extend him 3 years and draft or sign some realistic competition for the QB spot. See how it goes. They can always cut him loose before the clock starts on the extension.

  13. screamingyellowzonkers says:
    December 23, 2018 at 9:05 am
    Personally, I think Riveria would be a good fit in GB.

    GB doesn’t need some offensive guru/wiz kid.
    Rodgers is in charge of the offense.

    They need a defensive type of coach to improve the defense.


    He would definitely upgrade the defensive side of the ball. Could probably retain Pettine as well.

    GB still needs a good OC. Rodgers and that offense need some structure. They get by too much on yard ball rather than scheme.

  14. I’m still on the fence with Rivera, I kind of like him. But the DC has to be addressed, and lets not forget the problems Hurney caused in the past. We need a real GM to rebuild those lines and address the QB questions.

  15. I think Rivera’s future is dependent on how well Cam plays. The fact River’s job is in jeopardy tells you how Cam has played this year. On top of that you have his shoulder problem.

    The issue I have with Rivera is if other team’s knew he couldn’t throw deep then why was he in there. It’s basically limiting your offense to short-range passes. I don’t think any team can win if you can’t stretch the field. His decision to play Cam cost them some games. If that results in them missing out on the playoffs he should have to answer for that.

    I don’t think he deserves to be fired but if they have another year like that he might be.

  16. I know this is selfish to say but I really hope Tepper is dumb enough to fire Rivera, cause I’d love for him to my team’s HC next year.

  17. Getting to the Super Bowl with “Superman Except When Recovering Fumbles Newton” should put him in the HOF.

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