Are David Tepper and Bryce Young draws or deterrents for head coach candidates?

It could go either way...

Bryce Young
Bryce Young / Jeremy Reper-USA TODAY Sports
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The domineering David Tepper

The perception of David Tepper is that he’s an impatient, meddling owner who will stifle any chance of success with his overbearing approach. I don’t fully subscribe to that thinking. I do agree that he puts his nose into business that it doesn’t necessarily belong. But to be entirely fair, any Carolina Panthers business is his business - he owns the franchise.

It would best serve the front office folks that he hires if he’d take more vacations and be less involved in the day-to-day football stuff. Because Tepper isn’t a day-to-day football guy. He’s a billionaire who wants to be loved and wants to be revered. There’s no cost too big for that admiration.

And there - right there - is the draw.

Tepper will open the checkbook without trepidation. He’s a willing spender and believes money can buy him love. Perhaps he’s wrong on the latter, but I’m on board with him continuing to throw stacks of money at people until we find out. Hey, it’s better than throwing drinks… right?

Not only has he paid premium money for coaching staff members in the past, but he also seems to have a deep affinity for analytics-based front office personnel, who come with a history of salary cap understanding and contract negotiating.

That would lead me to believe he plans on getting busy in free agency to try and expedite the rebuilding of this roster. So long as he hires a head coach and a general manager with an aligned vision and plan for this team - that’s music to a candidate’s ears.

Lastly, I want to touch on the label of him being impatient. He signed his first head coach, Matt Rhule, to a seven-year contract. He gave him three and a half years of uninspired football and correlative personnel moves before breaking ties. After being fired, the Nebraska coach still got paid enough money that he could’ve spent the rest of his time eating sandwiches made of $100 bills and been rich until his last train departed.

I believe Tepper’s biggest blunder when it comes to coaching, was the incorrect decision on interim head coach Steve Wilks. He was kind of the antithesis of what Tepper looked to be seeking out in a coach. He couldn’t find the statistical support for how or why he was able to change the trajectory of that locker room and string together wins, damn near reaching the playoffs with a Sam Darnold and Baker Mayfield quarterback combination and after trading Christian McCaffrey.

Wilks coached football players like people and the players responded with the same energy. That energy inspired team football and accountability - and it was noticeably missing from the next coaching staff.

Frank Reich is a nice guy. Family guy. I’d 100 percent love to have him as my Lyft driver because I guarantee he’d be super pleasant. He wasn’t in the right mind to try and dive back into coaching, in my opinion, after the forest fire of a job with the Indianapolis Colts. Tepper wasn’t impatient there - he was proactive. He saw the bad situation staying bad, even deteriorating, and moved to try and save whatever he could.

I don’t anticipate a short leash for whichever coach he hires next. Tepper, for all his flaws, genuinely seems like he wants to win. He just expects the coach to have that same desire and the wherewithal to press the right buttons at the right time to make it a reality.

I don’t personally care for the way Tepper has spoken about fans, how he’s treated local reporters, how smug he’s come across in failed proposals such as the Rock Hill facility, or how he threw his Zima on a Jacksonville Jaguars fan. Those aren’t shining moments and I genuinely hope he understands that causing distractions and bringing that kind of heat to an already wandering franchise, isn’t going to help anything at all.

But I think fan perception and that of a potential coaching candidate are entirely different. If I were in the job market and one of my dream jobs - which that’s what an NFL head coaching job is, it’s one of 32 dream football coaching jobs - became available and it included a significant pay rise, the opportunity to work with a highly coveted young player, and for a boss that deeply wanted to reach the peak of success? I don’t know y’all… doesn’t sound that awful to me.

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