Matt Rhule’s time as Carolina Panthers head coach is being defined by indecisiveness as the team struggles to find an identity in 2021.
Sunday got off to an encouraging start for the Carolina Panthers. After generating an early stop, the offense put together one of their most impressive drives of the season that resulted in Cam Newton running into the end zone.
Unfortunately, the offensive momentum stalled after the opening touchdown march. On Carolina’s third series, Newton threw a dreadful pick-six to Mykal Walker which abruptly ended a promising drive. The Panthers responded with another three-and-out and found themselves in a 17-7 hole on their home turf at the brink of halftime.
Needing a quick spark, Matt Rhule pulled the veteran Newton and replaced him with backup P.J. Walker. The ensuing series looked doomed from the start, as it was difficult to tell if the team was even legitimately trying to score points or not.
Walker responded by throwing an ugly interception of his own on just his second pass attempt.
While this is just a small microcosm of Carolina’s disappointing season, it also highlights one clear theme of the Matt Rhule era so far.
Both on the field and in terms of forming any sort of long-term plan to get the Panthers back into postseason contention.