Carolina Panthers: Embracing the new age of leadership
The Carolina Panthers are undergoing a new age of leadership.
The theme of the Panthers these past two seasons has been heartbreak. Whether it was a last-second flop or an utter annihilation, Panther fans were disappointed time and time again. And it hasn’t just been games, it’s been personnel.
Last offseason the Panthers were forced to break some hearts because things turned sour during the regular season. The 2019 season was just as rough with all of the injuries and the loss of coach Rivera, and the offseason is due to be just as rough, if not worse. However, it is important to remember that personnel losses open up opportunities for the younger folks.
Mario Addison did a tremendous setting an example for Brian Burns after Julius Peppers retired from football following the 2018 season. Shaq Thompson filled in the role of Luke Kuechly’s running mate following the release of Thomas Davis after the 2018 season. And, of course, Christian McCaffrey assumed the lead running back role just nicely following the release of Jonathan Stewart after the 2017 season. The end of something good is usually the beginning of something great.
The loss of Ron Rivera opened the door for multiple candidates to become the new head coach. Perry Fewell made his case for the team, but it didn’t work out too well. There was also a lot of speculation that Eric Bieniemy would be the one to take the job, however that didn’t go over so well either. Matt Rhule, a proven college leader, was inked to a deal with the Panthers and will get his shot to turn the team around.
Likewise, there is talented youth on the Panthers’ roster that deserves a chance to prove they can be starters in the NFL. Sometimes it takes the loss of a veteran leader to see the youth get their chance, and with all of the big changes it’s bound to happen quickly. If the Panthers lose Greg Olsen this offseason we could see another tight end take a huge step forward.