Carolina Panthers secondary coach Curtis Fuller resigned due to workplace misconduct…
The untimely resignation of Carolina Panthers secondary coach, Curtis Fuller, following the NFL Draft left a number of questions to be answered as General Manager Marty Hurney and coach Ron Rivera had recently selected two new defensive backs in the second and third rounds.
Less than a week later, Fuller announced his resignation and many began to speculate his decision had to do with picks made by the Panthers. Promoted to coach the secondary following Steve Wilks being named as defensive coordinator, last season, Fuller had worked his way up with Rivera and the Panthers staff in recent years.
On Wednesday, his resignation was announced and as time has passed more details are being unveiled regarding the reason. According to The Charlotte Observer, Fuller voluntarily left his position because of an investigation into his correspondence with female employees reaching an inappropriate level. Reports indicate it was the amount of communication and not necessarily the content which led to an employee reporting the incident.
The Panthers are continuing to cooperate with the league as an investigation into former team owner and founder, Jerry Richardson, also continues. His own workplace misconduct allegations, first reported by Sports Illustrated, led to an announced selling of the franchise in late December.
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Multiple candidates for ownership emerged but as NFL team owner’s meetings approach toward the end of May, it appears Carolina may not have a bidder for league approval in time. Richardson and the Panthers had hoped to have a new owner in place prior to the upcoming season.
As the investigation continues there is no telling what other discoveries may be made. A replacement for Fuller has yet to be named but expectations are that another inside promotion is forthcoming.
Jeff Imamura, who currently serves as an assistant to the defensive backfield with a focus on the nickelback position is a likely candidate for the upgrade. If not, Rivera may choose to hire an outside individual but the pool of potential hires is much more shallow at this point in the year.
Even so, the Panthers need to make a hire soon in order to assist with the development of a relatively young group of players on the backend of the Carolina defense.