Scott Fitterer’s growing influence within the Carolina Panthers
There has been a growing belief that Matt Rhule might not have the absolute power he once did within the Carolina Panthers. Team owner David Tepper handed the head coach the final say on all personnel decisions as part of his bumper contract, but a complete shift in recruitment approach this offseason indicates the balance has shifted.
This is thanks in no small part to how well Scott Fitterer has handled the responsibilities of general manager. The respected front office figure has adjusted the role extremely well and been front and center of everything Carolina has done this offseason, with Rhule taking a back seat from the public eye after growing scrutiny surrounding his job status.
Nobody will know for sure just how much Fitterer is calling the shots, in all likelihood. But it’s hard to look at how the draft was approached and not think he wasn’t orchestrating things.
There was no panic. A calm composure to let things come to them and when the time came to strike, it was done with conviction and a real sense of purpose.
Obviously, what comes next will ultimately be down to how Rhule and the rest of his coaching staff help the 2022 draft class reach their potential. If they can achieve this sooner than expected, then one cannot rule out the possibility of the Panthers putting up more of a fight, at the very least, next time around.