Dave Canales draws lofty comparison ahead of Carolina Panthers' quest

Dave Canales has made an encouraging start.
Dave Canales
Dave Canales / Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

It's hard not to like how Dave Canales does his business. His enthusiasm knows no bounds. He's got an infectious personality that resonates well with the modern-day player. The new Carolina Panthers head coach isn't afraid of a challenge and always searches for positives.

That's exactly the sort of leader Carolina needs right now. Canales is highly motivated and eager to maximize the significant responsibility in front of him. This job was seen as a poisoned chalice to many, but not to the former Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator.

Having Dan Morgan to work alongside was another positive. The pair formed a close working relationship during their time with the Seattle Seahawks. Now, their respective rises up the ladder have come full circle and they are back together once again.

Carolina Panthers see Pete Carroll traits in Dave Canales

This previous chemistry is something that can help the Panthers. It won't be smooth sailing all the time, but the new power couple has a long-term plan in place. Unlike previous regimes, they are also working in unison with an aligned vision for the franchise.

Morgan gave Canales a lofty comparison when speaking to Albert Breer from Sports Illustrated. The general manager sees similarities between the coach and Pete Carroll, which comes as no surprise considering he was a big part of the Seahawks' staff during his time at the helm.

"He’s like a young Pete [Carroll] in a lot of ways. He’s enthusiastic every single day about his job and makes everyone around him better just because of the energy that he brings and his love for football. It’s really contagious and really similar to how Pete was. I’d be lying if I said I envisioned this. It wasn’t because I didn’t think he could ever be a head coach. I think the time that I was out in Seattle, we were both so young and so green at our jobs that you never think about that. I was a pro scout that was trying to become the assistant pro director. He was the quality-control coach that was trying to be a receiver coach. I think that’s the cool part about it."

Dan Morgan via Sports Illustrated

Morgan isn't the only one to see some Carroll tendencies in Canales. He's got the same enthusiastic approach through good times and bad. He takes things one day at a time and is always looking to uplift rather than criticize. This is matched by high-level coaching methods that bring the best out of the players at his disposal.

These traits became synonymous with Carroll during his prolific coaching career. If Canales can go on to have even half of this success, the Panthers are in good hands.

Many wonder if this opportunity came too soon for Canales. He's got just one year of play-calling experience and is younger than most head coaches around the league. These are valid concerns, but the Panthers wanted to get ahead of the game rather than relying on experienced retreads down on their luck or someone from the college ranks after past mistakes.

Canales has everyone on the same page, which was always half the battle for a new head coach looking to implement their ideas. He's also quickly got to grips with quarterback Bryce Young, working on key fundamental issues that blighted his rookie campaign in pursuit of brighter fortunes moving forward.

It's a good start, but no more than that.

How Canales prepares his troops over the summer and handles the pressure-cooker environment of competitive NFL games in the prominent leadership position will be crucial. If he can stick to his beliefs and maintain the same level of motivation across the board, it won't be much longer before the Panthers have a team to be proud of.

If not, then it's back to the drawing board (again).