Matt Rhule shouldn’t have to explain his desire to win

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule /
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Carolina Panthers
(Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule /

Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule shouldn’t need to explain himself.

The cries of dismay from large sections of the Carolina Panthers‘ fanbase following their Week 16 win at the Washington Football Team did not go unnoticed by head coach Matt Rhule. A fifth win of the 2020 campaign at FedEx Field was another step in the right direction for an improving roster, but it saw them drop six spots in the 2021 NFL Draft as a result.

This is set to put the Carolina Panthers out of the running for a top quarterback prospect such as Justin Fields and Zach Wilson, with the likes of Penei Sewell and Micah Parsons also projected to be off the board by the time they are set to pick at No. 9 overall.

There is every chance this situation would improve with defeat against the New Orleans Saints in their season finale next Sunday. But the damage regarding a possible top-three selection has already been done.

The tanking notion in professional sports is absurd.

Imagine trying to convince someone fighting for their livelihood that taking a loss to improve their chances of drafting their potential successor is a good idea.

It simply wouldn’t happen.

And certainly not on Rhule’s watch.

The former Baylor man has been keen to stress the importance of winning in December to a young team that is clearly learning as they go. This should serve them well when they are ready to become postseason contenders again and although some fans may not like it, there is no other alternative.