Sunday, September 15, 2013

Will heartbreaking Panther loss to Buffalo get Rivera fired?

Quick observations on the Panthers' 24-23 loss to Buffalo Sunday (which I watched not from Buffalo, but from my couch, just to make clear where I am while writing this):

-- That is the kind of blown game that gets your head coach fired, and it won't be a total surprise if Panthers owner Jerry Richardson pulls the trigger as early as Monday. He showed last year with the midseason firing of general manager Marty Hurney -- whom Richardson was a lot closer to than Rivera -- that he will make a difficult midseason move if he feels like nothing is working. If nothing else, this puts the Rivera job security question back in play once more.

Rivera is now 2-14 in games decided by seven points or less during his Carolina career. Fox Sports flashed up another statistic late in the game noting that the Panthers had lost nine games under Rivera since he took over in 2011 after leading in the fourth quarter -- the most in the NFL in that time period.

Make it 10.

This one just had some awful decision-making late -- not only by the defense in allowing Buffalo's game-winning, two-minute drive of 80 yards, but also by Rivera. To not try and throw the ball at least once in the final possession -- with the ball inside Buffalo's 35 -- was conservatism at its worst. Rivera and offensive coordinator Mike Shula simply ran it three times in a row, using up all of Buffalo's timeouts, but giving the Bills back the ball only six points down with almost two minutes left instead of going for the jugular.

Remember how well Seattle used up the final five minutes of last week's game, by throwing in similar situations and getting first downs? The Panthers do that just once, and the game's over.

Then came the Bills' final drive and its air of inevitability -- Luke Kuechly's critical pass-interference penalty (negating an interception) and the pass-coverage mixup from the Panthers' patched-up secondary with two seconds left that allowed the last touchdown from two yards out.

-- Critical point: Why would you entrust the game to a beaten-down secondary? That's what the Panthers did by running the ball three straight times on that last drive, playing the "let's don't lose" card once again instead of the "let's finish this." They put it in the hands of a tired defense -- which still should have stopped the Bills, yes, but should never have had to be in that position.

-- Where was the pass rush on that last drive? Where has Greg Hardy been, period? That 50-sack goal isn't looking too good.

-- With the team's secondary in tatters after a spate of injuries Sunday, the team's doctors and Panther general manager Dave Gettleman better have a very good week. Eli Manning is going to absolutely eat the Panthers' lunch next Sunday again in Charlotte if the Panthers can't get the secondary settled.

-- No one can accuse Shula of not taking vertical shots in this game. It seemed like Cam Newton threw a 40-yard ball on almost every drive -- until the end. Only one was completed -- a 40-yarder to Ted Ginn Jr. that accounted for the Panthers' second touchdown. But that deep threat helped the Panthers elsewhere, as the offense looked better in Week 2 despite the final score.

-- Defensive end Mario Williams had the best pass-rushing day I have ever seen against a Carolina offensive line. The stats back it up -- Williams had 4.5 sacks, which was the most the Panthers have ever allowed to an individual. Whenever he was blocked by just one man, he usually ate it up -- especially if the poor soul was the overmatched Byron Bell. It was the second time in a row the Panthers have gotten burned by a former Wolfpack player -- Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson threw for 320 yards against them last week.

-- Graham Gano really had a good day, making three fourth-quarter field goals for Carolina but also making sure the Bills could never get a kickoff return by blasting all his kickoffs out of the end zone. This sure wasn't his fault.

-- Kuechly's interception earlier in the fourth quarter was a big play, but his pass interference call was unfortunately even bigger. As good as Kuechly is, in the first two weeks he has been unable to stem the tide of a game turning against the Panthers. Nor has Newton, and those two are the Panthers' two cornerstones. If the Panthers had just gotten one of their final three field-goal drives into the end zone, this one would have been over and Carolina would have been going home 1-1 instead of 0-2.

Instead, the Panthers go home with a huge number of questions, including how long their head coach is going to last. In the 34 games he has coached Carolina, Rivera has now lost 10 of them after his team led at some point in the fourth quarter.

These sorts of losses have long ceased being surprises. They constitute some sort of coaching character flaw -- this terrible habit Rivera has of riding the brakes with a lead. And I'm no longer sure it can be fixed.

138 comments:

Anonymous said...

I like Ron, but it's time to go. Shula, too.

chris a said...

I don't know what more needs to be said. 2-14 in games decided by 7 or fewer the past 3 seasons. Rivera must go and he must go now! If the Panthers wait until the off-season you might as well chalk 2014 up as a lost season too.

Fire Rivera before Monday, install an interim head coach and let Gentleman hire the new coach by mid-season. At least this lets the new coach gain some much needed chemistry with the team before the start of next season.

Anonymous said...

We need Nick Saban and a QB that can throw accurately with touch ,and read a defense ,and can run a pro style offense instead a goofy cooked up scheme that simple for Cam ,and other teams to figure out. Rivera needs to go ,and I think after the NYG give the Panthers a beat down Gettleman will start house cleaning with Rivera ,and Cam then bring in his own Head coach & QB

Anonymous said...

Shouldn't wait until Monday - don't even let the coaches back on the plane to go home!!!

Ghoul said...

Beason was beaten repeatedly, all day long, by the tight ends, even by the fullback on a pass play. could not hold his end on stretch plays. I thought Blackkburn was going to split time with him, I did not see him all day.

Anonymous said...

Same 'ol same 'ol. But with a new GM, perhaps they might finally pull the trigger. This has become amusing to watch though.

Anonymous said...

True, true, true.

Bye Rivera.

Anonymous said...

Scott. Kuechly interfering with the receiver likely caused the interception to happen. If he hadnt interfered the receiver likely would have caught it. Pretty hard to argue that play it seems to me.

Anonymous said...

And Cam's maturity and smarts are severely lacking. He's not the answer at QB either

Scott said...

The answer is hopefully. Rivera isn't the devil, but we don't need John Fox II for another year. GOOD Teams win by being conservative. Average teams lose. How many different ways can we back off into the "prevent the win" mentality. If we can't be effective, we should at least be entertaining. So far the 2013 Panthers are neither.

David Crabb said...

Does firing Rivera send the message to the team that we're giving up on the season. The players respect him, and they may not buy in, however, this playing not to lose rather than playing to win is getting very old, very fast!

Anonymous said...

With the first pick of the 2014 NFL season the Panthers pick.....

LitLover said...

Once again, POOR playcalling by Shula. This offense has no balance. In fact, it appeared as though Buffalo's defense was always 2 steps ahead of us. Our plays were predictable. I was guessing them from my couch at home, so I know that paid NFL players and coaches could easily do the same thing.

WHY did we not TRY for a touchdown in the last drive? IT MADE NO LOGICAL SENSE. Our defense was tired, our secondary was the definition of depleted, and we never tried to pass even ONCE?? And Rivera just sits there like a statue as he watches the game slip through our hands once again.

I am a loyal Panthers fan, but this game is enough to make me hang up the hat for a little bit. This is becoming a culture for us. Our team has a lot of talent that deserves to succeed, but our coaches lose the game for us with their complacency.

Anonymous said...

It's time...Rivera is destroying our franchise...need to fire him now, we are headed for another 2-6 start...the question is, will Jerry let Gettlemen do and who do we promote?...I've been a Rivera supporter but I'm done...it is very clear that he does not have the skills to manage a game...not trying on 4th down to put the game away was the last straw...our entire defense is injured and he asks what is left to win the game???....I can't wait to hear what he has to say...you newspaper guys need to be screaming for changes as well

Anonymous said...

Can him now so 2014v is not wasted.

Anonymous said...

As others have said its time for Rivera to go. He's had more than a fair amount of time to fix this and hasn't. My guess and only a guess, Rivera is gone this week.

Anonymous said...

wow, fair weathered panther fans. What a surprise. How can you anyone point a finger at Cam Newton. Our offensive line could not block a college line. Cam was running for his life. I assure you if any of those other rookie QBs played for the panthers they would have not thrown for almost 8000 yards in the first 2 years. Carolina fans have little knowledge of the game. Go to www.nfl.com and compare the stats among QBs(all of the stats) I think you will be surprised. Any other QB who is not mobile would not survive with the lack of blocking and poor coaching.

Anonymous said...

Cam did not have the touch to hit an open receiver but more annoying than that was his smug grin each time he over threw the receiver. Humility is not an attribute of this young man.

bart davis said...

I like Shula- he's great developing QBs, but his track record as an OC is that he's ultra-conservative. Nothing wrong with that, per se. However, when your 4 offensive threats are Cam Newton, DeAngelo Williams, Steve Smith and Greg Olsen (with J Stewart injured), and you refuse to play an offense to Cam's strength's you're hog tying yourself. (And Rivera made this hiring decision)

With that said, the reason Rivera must go is due to the 4th and 1 call at the 21 yard line. I agree with Scott on the fact that it was conservatism, but, again, it was 4th and 1.

The decision to go for a field goal seems logical... until you realize both starting safety's and corners were out of the game and that the Bills had no timeouts. So a field goal only allows a touchdown to beat you. Go for it. Put the ball in Smith's hands, or better- make the 55million man DeAngelo run it, or came, or even Tolbert. Worst case? They have it on the 20 and you're up by 3 and lose the same way.

Time for him to go.

Anonymous said...

Was hoping better for Rivera but he seems worse this year than last but we got some great players and we need a coach for them and a new QB to get them down the field. Cam is like Rivera--lackadaisical. I don't know who they think they are going up against every week.

They should learn a lesson from the QB today from Buffalo --he wanted it really bad and he got it --hard not to get excited for a guy like that and what he did. Even that little QB last week did a great job. Cam and his wild balls need to go with Rivera. Bench Cam till he is traded.

Michael B said...

4th down and 1 and we kick a field goal, to give them the ball back with our secondary absolutely beat up. Give that ball to Tolbert and get 1 yard, and that game is over.
Instead, Rivera gives the ball back to Buffalo and gives them a chance to win it.
STUPID!
Rivera has to go...perhaps now we know why he never was given a head coaching job.

Anonymous said...

There's a reason Rivera had 8 Head coaching interviews before he was given a job. He is absolutely terrible and I hope he is fired tomorrow. The Panthers are a joke right now and have been for a long time.

Ghoul said...

Stat off the day:

Peyton Manning completed a pass to 6 different players, in the first quarter! Cam Newton completed passes to only 5 different players all game. Where were the screen passes, passes to Williams in the flat? Do we even have a back up tight end?

Anonymous said...

Hope Jerry does wake up. Time for Ron to walk. This is pathetic coaching at its finest.

Anonymous said...

I ❤ U Matt! Go Falcons!!!!

Dusty said...

Ron Rivera must be fired Monday morning. Shula too. Jerry Richardson should fire himself. He holds this city and its taxpayers hostage this summer for $17 million then puts this lackluster team and coaching staff on the field. I want my money back!

Unknown said...

It doesn't matter if Cam throws deep or not. He usually winds up over-throwing or under-throwing, on most of his passes. IMO, he's just not an accurate QB. And the coaching staff leaves us all shaking our heads. Gettleman needs to do something and quick, so we can make something out of this season. I don't think the fans can take another losing season! I know I can't!

Anonymous said...

If they go into the off-week 0 and 3 they'll come out with a new coaching staff.

Anonymous said...

4:51

Unfortunately, Saban has no reason to ever leave Bama. He will likely not lose more than 5 games in the remainder of his career, and he has plenty of money.

That is the problem with firing Rivera, who do you replace him with? Best case scenario is Gruden or Cowher, but we will probably hire another life-long coordinator.

Anonymous said...

Fire Rivera and have him take Newton with him

par said...

If Rivera keeps McDermott. He derserves to be fired. Defensive game calling is horrible. Especailly with a rookie qb. No blizes. The Eagles knoew something when they fired McDermott.

Mark said...

Rivera and Shula have to go. Cam might be next. Hurney should be hunted down.

Unknown said...

It doesn't matter where Cam throws. It's usually over-thrown or under-thrown! He's just not an accurate or consistent QB. Gettleman needs to do something and fast. I don't think any Panther fan can handle another losing season!

Randy Howell said...

Beason?...The whole team was beaten badly. Don't think that Rivera or Shula will be gone tomorrow or this season. Richardson Does not have the .......Well you know. As long as he and the NFL are making huge profits.......Why care? It's you time and monies being wasted. Wasted my last week-end on the Panthers.

Faz said...

We play "not to lose". This coaching staff does not play to "win". Our defense created turnovers towards the end of the game and our coaches play for a field goal. What happened to possession passes to Olsen or Smith? The Panther's will never be a Playoff contender with this offensive philosophy. If you are going to keep Cam, let him run. He is not an accurate or consistent passer. Panther fans are sick of the mediocrity Mr. Richardson. Let Mr. Gettleman do what he has to do to bring some respect back to this organization!

Anonymous said...

I agree that it is time for Rivera to go. The many wasted opportunities are to big to ignore. Nothing in life is permanent. And, sadly It's time to move on

Anonymous said...

i'm sure rivera is a good guy but not all former assistants make good head coaches. there's probably a reason he went so long without a head coaching opportunity. there's no excuse the talent level is not there but it's odd the offensive line couldn't protect newton and the defensive line couldn't get to the bill's qb. i'm sick of the panthers trying to run deangelo between the tackles, it's just not where he's effective particularly if you don't have a lead fullback blocking in front; newton is not reading all receivers and trying to power it in to double coverage.

Anonymous said...

Nice! Nice! Nice! Prevent defense again and all it keeps you from doing is winning!!! When will this Coaching staff ever learn. It's time for Rivera to Go!!!

Panther Dan said...

Fire Rivera now. Do it, Jerry, for the love of everything good.

psl1995 said...

Need a change. To play this many games this close means the talent level is not that different from the teams we play. We just do not play to win, meaning we do not allow the players to actually go win the game. We are to "by the book," and sometimes you coach the game. Go for the win, throw in to the end zone and not leave it to a depleted and soft secondary. How many times do you follow this script before you throw it out and "You play to WIN the game - Hello!"

Anonymous said...

Bottom line is the Panthers have made NO changes in the past 2 or 3 years to their core personnel. The problem is Jerry Richardson is too loyal to players. D. Williams, A. Edwards, Beason, Stewart (can't stay healthy), Gross, and even Cam should have been sent packing already. Until GM can make personnel moves consistently, the Panthers will continue their downward spiral. It doesn't surprise me they can't win games because they are NOT A GOOD football team. Been saying this for years...You can change coaches, GM, but until you change players, as FOX knew all too well, IT IS WHAT IT IS!!!!

BigMikey said...

Jerry....you know what must be done.

Relieve this man of his duties. And his OC.

Call Cowher, call Gruden, for crying out loud, call Dennis Green.

Do. Something. Now.

nemov said...

The Panthers have always had some of the dumbest fans in the USA. I forgive them, it's a basketball state. Cam completes more than half of his passes and had the team in position to win today. He's playing with a terrible offensive line and a coach who couldn't win at Alabama.

The head coach is a brain-dead coward who should have been fired last season. I won't be watching this clown show until Richardson corrects the mistake he made in the offseason.

Anonymous said...

Rivera needs to go...NOW!

Strategy and play calling sucked pretty much all day.

They play to lose..not to win.

Anonymous said...

It's time for Rivera to go. He's a talented coordinator, but he's lacks the executive knack it takes to bring a team to the next level. Players respond to certain leadership styles, his is one that does not exude confidence

BigMikey said...

Well, at least I'm not a Jags fan.

I still have THAT blessing to count.

(slams head against wall, repeatedly)

joe said...

Cam is not an accurate QB, Look at the all the over thrown passes ,This is the big leagues you have to make every throw count that`s why manning ...Luck ...Rogers...Brady can always keep there team in any game . Is Cam the only QB that chews gum while playing...This team is a mess I believe with the right coaching staff we could get better play out of the same players we have, Please scrap the read option use the passing plays of last year but scrap the read option all the teams no how to defend it when we run it.Looks like 0-3 after the Giants game , Gettleman please make us a contender even if you have to clean house.Were was the Pro set backfield were was the I formation with play action ????? I really ? the entire coaching staff.

Anonymous said...

I see a lot of talent on both sides of the ball. The weakest, most inconsistent link is the offensive line but you can curb their flaws with good playcalling, and a better, more experienced quarterback. I think Vince Young would be better than Cam in this offense.

Aaron Rodgers was harassed by the Redskins all game and he didn't even blink. Cam doesn't know how to navigate the field, anticipate throws, anticipate coverages, or throw with touch. Idk what happened after his rookie season but he has not progressed at all. And Steve Smith looks like he's gonna have another wasted year with his Hall of Fame potential smh, a shame.

joe said...

Please don`t sign Cam to a rediculous contract next year...He`s not a consistant passer and will never get us to a superbowl.

joe said...

Someone please how does other teams put a top notch product on the field? Denver...Patriot...49ERS...Giants...Green Bay...Why does there coaching staff seem more efficient than ours ????

Anonymous said...

I have supported Ron Rivera and his staff through all the horrible losses. This loss was the last straw. The terrible offensive game plan (at least I assume there was one in the first half of the game) was mystifying. Why did we ignore the running game and throw bombs? Then we have the lead and 4 min to go and all we have to do is the SAME thing Seattle did last week. But no, this coaching staff put this team in the position to lose.

Mr. Richardson, please do the right thing.

Anonymous said...

ONLY serious QB`s chew gum while playing a NFL game.Jerry Let Gettleman lurer a Great coaching staff in here quickly...

Anonymous said...

When you coach without passion, you get play without passion! Time for a new Head Coach, new OC, and new QB.....when you don't feel your job is in question, you don't play as well. Cam needs to know he is expendable and needs to decide if he is going to be an NFL QB....personally, I don't think he is the player we all thought he was. NEW COACH, NEW OC AND PUT ANDERSON IN!

Anonymous said...

If you do what you've always done, you'll get what you''ve always got. I have wasted my last Sunday watching this joke of an organization. Thank God hockey season is starting soon. Go Canes!

Shots956 said...

This team has very little talent on offense and in the secondary. Beason is awful and Rivera is a terrible coach, nice man but a terrible coach. it is time to hire a coach that will clean house and make it right. we do that every 3 years anyway. And no we don't need gruden. Cam can not throw accurately and on timing patterns he is the worse. Captain Mutter-lynn has to go by Monday, Josh Norman is awful the whole secondary is awful. Greg hardy is awful at tines. Time for changes.

Anonymous said...

We don't need Sabin! BUT, we need changes! No more Rivera, no more Shula, and no more Newton. Start there! We can do any worse!

Anonymous said...

With the Panthers sharply limiting Cam's running, his weaknesses as a passer have become glaring. Desperate times call for desperate measures, so I'd add back Some of the running until Cam can improve his accuracy. I don't know how you go from being a mediocre NFL passer to being a good one, but the Pants need to do whatever it takes to amp up Cam's throwing.

Anonymous said...

And fire the two 'sportswriters' that both picked that sorry team to win!

Anonymous said...

People look at the teams that seem to win every year or have winning records......They all have a coach and coaching staff that are game thinkers..Game adjusters at half time ...call plays that keep defenses off balance...I really thought this season would be better but you can`t be an elite team without a accurate QB in this sport anymore...I honestly believe if Cam had to play for any Elite team in the NFL he could not run there plays like Brady...Rogers Manning..look guys dont get madd at me look who won thw superbowl it was not a scrambling QB but an accurate passer who can read defenses.

Mark Epperly said...

Good Coaches win close games, Rivera is 2-14 in games decided by a touchdown or less. It's time for a change and we can't fire Richardson..

Anonymous said...

Panthers Fans! Please free CAM!!!Cam has only set QB records his 1st 2 years in Carolina! Yes! Let Cam go! you all don't deserve Cam.

Anonymous said...

Rivera and McDermott have to go. we can't stop anyone in the last 2 minutes, with or without the lead. Time for a change and a coach that has some fire in his belly

Dossie Poteat said...

Fourth and 1 with under 2 minutes. The field goal was useless. Time was your most important commodity. Run Deanglo in the wildcat that was effective today. Insanity is what?

I'm Right Yer Wrong said...

Yet again, we have the chance to win the game. Get 2 yards instead of kicking the field goal and we're able to run out the clock. But no. Kick the field goal and let them get the ball back and win the game. Rivera just keeps doing the same thing over and over and over and NEVER LEARNS! PLEASE send him packing! We need a new coach to see what he has so he can plan for next year.

Anonymous said...

Clowney to Charlotte!!

Anonymous said...

I believe the entire coaching staff have all failed their math courses. Scaring 6 points on their last two possessions leaves it open for Buffalo to score 7 and win. Given the Panthers track record, who of their fans didn't know that Buffalo would do it. Sickening to all the Panther fans to see this time and time again. Let's get a coaching staff good in math!

Walkin-n-Waggin Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Services said...

Keep losing tight games in the closing seconds? Only one thing to blame: Coaching. I like Rivera, but his ship has sunk. Clean the coaching house -- everyone but Ricky Proehl and maybe the new special teams coach needs to go. Just be sure to turn out the lights when you leave.

The only way to right this sinking ship is to hire a high-profile coach that can rid this team of it's CULTURE OF LOSING the minute he enters the locker room: John Gruden or Bill Cowher come immediately to mind.

Anonymous said...

Three years ago, two teams were really bad, the panthers and the 49er's, " Mr. Richardson" went for the cheap option of Ron Rivera, the Niners went for Jim Harbaugh, you get what you pay for Jerry!

Anonymous said...

Note to Jerry R. Losing fan base with this consistently less than mediocre team...Monday, fire Rivera, Trade Cam who is Inaccurate, can't think on his feet, tunnel vision, and apparently a lousy communicator with team mates...boycott these bozos till they get some " must win" attitude rather than play not to lose mentality coaching and player talent...we're going from a respectable team to joke of the league...make your move Monday Jerry...anything is better than Rivera.

Anonymous said...


who's available that we would bring in

Paul Ryan said...

I never really was sold on Rivera; never sold on Shula. Jay Gruden and or Jon Gruden would be a huge asset to this team going forward. Draft a new QB draft new O-line, draft some secondary, then you'll see an unquestionable team.

Anonymous said...

This is a shame, really. Rivera has always been straight up in press conferences and interviews. He has accepted blame for his mistakes (in my opinion) and called some players out in a way Fox never would have. By all accounts Rivera seems to be a stand up guy - honest and well liked. But, the manner in which the Panthers lose can no longer be overlooked. There is a running theme here and it seems unlikely to change.

I have a lot of respect for Ron Rivera. I really wanted to see him succeed here. But, it seems unlikely that he can turn this ship around with his game management skills. Some coordinators can't make that jump to head coach. I'd say his conservatism and demeanor make him better suited for a coordinator or position coach position. I think he gave it a good try here and put all he had into it. I wish him the best of luck with his future endeavors.

Bottom line: the Panthers team and organization is a mess. It will probably take 8-9 years to recover from the Hurney years. It's going to be a long haul folks. Unless Gettleman is a miracle worker, he'll be long retired before the Panthers see real success. We'll be wearing paper bags on our heads before this is all over.

Anonymous said...

Ugly game and ugly coaching. Shula was a miserable dud in Tampa as he is here. Panthers may win a game or two...but by accident.

Dennis Dotson said...

I love our players. All of them. Even the flawed ones. A mediocre team can win with good coaching. I believe we have (well, had before half our team went down today with injury) a great team that could win with even mediocre coaching. Rivera is pitiful. I feel bad for the guy. After this stint he will be lucky to get a division 3 college special teams coaching job. Gotta go. If he is on that field next Sunday I am pretty sure Richardson is going to lose a fair amount of fans. Do not be cheap old man. Go big, hire a NAME! We don't care. Gruden, Cowher, ANYONE with a proven winning record. No more assistant coaches. We want a proven commodity!

Tom said...

Blaming Cam is absurd. His WRs get no separation. His OL can't pass or run block. The play calling is unimaginative. Someone needs to tell Shula the read-option offense the Panthers play at running ONLY works if Cam actually runs every once in a while.

It's time to say goodbye to Ron Rivera and David Shula too. We're not going to win with them so we might as well say adios.

Anonymous said...

STARTS AT THE TOP. The owner? Refuses spending money on quality. And why should he? The city rolls over when threatened and gives him 89 million in tax dollars. And fans continue supporting the worthless product which is fast becoming the laughing stock of the NFC. So if the owner could careless and still gets his way, why should the coaches, players. You fools line up every year and eat the same old crap shoveled out to you from the Panthers. The only thing more numerous than their play, are the thousands spending thousands on it. All the while, fat cat Richardson laughs all the way to the bank. What an embarrassment to the city. This owner, this team and the fans, I mean sheep, who are so shocked and upset when reality shows up year after year. Pathetic, the whole lot.

Anonymous said...

Send Rivera and Cam packing!

Anonymous said...

Hire a coach (Rivera) from a weak organization (Chargers under Turner) and you get a weak coach. You can't stand around like a fence post and get your team motivated. Why Shula was hired is a complete mystery, he has done nothing in any previous position (maybe he's the only one who would take the job). Rivera is a nice guy, but not a head coach. I don't think Shula has a clue.

John said...

One critical question that you failed to ask Scott... who do you replace him with?

You're not going to bring anyone in from the outside at this point and in the NFL this usually ends up being either the OC or DC and can you really put any faith in either of those?

I agree this was lousy coaching, I'm just not sure we have any better options. Just really, really disappointed.

Anonymous said...

George Shinn, Bob Johnson, Michael Jordan, Bruton Smith, and the king daddy of them all, Jerry Richardson. Charlotte, NC - where greedy, arrogant, self absorbed business men become sports franchise owners, rape the public's tax dollars, provide ZERO results, and the fans scream give me some more! In a desperate attempt to be noticed among all the big cities at the dance, Charlotte let's her dates screw year over every time. Wake up Charlotte. It is YOUR money that keeps them going. You will NEVER have a winner until you quit accepting losers.

Anonymous said...

Shinn, Johnson, Jordan, smith and Richardson. Charlotte, NC. Where businessmen make FOOLS outs of John Q. taxpayer by owning sports teams and providing ZERO results. Wake up Charlotte. In your desperate attempt being noticed by the bigger cities, at the dance, your dates are screwing you over year after year. And it's YOUR money that enables them. You will NEVER have a winner until you quit supporting losers. A fool and his money are soon parted.

Anonymous said...

Can only imagine what kind of coach Jerry and Gettleman will dig up. What are they, 150 between them? Cheap and old would be a good guess for the next coach.

Anonymous said...

Anybody know George Seifert's phone number?

Anonymous said...

The Bobcats, The Panthers, The Checkers, and the Knights. I've never seen a city more full of LOSERS. Good on you Charlotte. Maybe one day my city can aspire to such heights.

Anonymous said...

Is there a college Coach out there that would make an instant impact?? Someone that holds his team accountable...That thinks like a poker player....makes adjustments on the fly.

Anonymous said...

4th and 1 was the game changer. you have one of the best backfields in the NFL. you can't run a yard? really! Head coach needs to be aggressive on plays like especially since the Panthers are so inconsistent. Light a fire! Go for it! now's the time to change head coaches, ASAP. I have a very disappointed 15 yr. old Panther fan. Now debating about buying Patriots/Panther tix because of the complete blown game was saw today. Mr. Richardson, save your team now!

Anonymous said...

To allow this farce to continue is just poor management and ownership. Rivera only plays winning football when he is behind. There is a reason he has such a pathetic +/-7pt W/L record. It only takes a point ahead for him to go into offensive shutdown mode and he has proven that time and time again.

Anonymous said...

The WR's got plenty of separation! Cam just doesn't have the accuracy or quick decision making ability to hit them when they are open! This has got to be addressed or no coach will make a difference.

Anonymous said...

Hey Mr. Richardson, I am DONE with your team...I have better things to do on Sundays than watch your inferior product week after week. See ya!

Unknown said...

Bench CAM Now! Nothing personal but Anderson is more experienced and more accurate. bring Cam along slowly. Save the season do the right thing River.

Anonymous said...

Fire Rivera and hire former App State coach Jerry Moore!!!

JJones said...

The complaints about Rivera are the same complaints people had about Fox. Maybe it isn't the coaching? There just aren't enough good players. The coaches know this. They coach conservatively for a reason. Fox is doing pretty well with good players in Denver. Rivera would probably do pretty well with good players here. Another coach will do poorly also if he's stuck with the same team - or type of team.

Anonymous said...

Play Anderson! Cam is not the future.

Anonymous said...

Bill c has been sitting in Raliegh N.C waiting for the panthers to call.In game winning situations we should know by now our secondary cannot be trusted especially "josh norman" watch the footage from last season on our loses if you don't believe" Cams inaccuracy"high throws" and inability to go through his progressions quickly are really hurting this team. Derrick anderson would run it better and exceled in it in clevland and showed it in the preseason.Ron plays not to lose which doesn't build team confidence.

Anonymous said...

The "I hope we don't lose mentality culture" by this coaching staff must go. Last week Rivera waited until AFTER the game to say they were to conservative (A good coach see that and makes half time adjustments). Now this week we climb in s shell in the fourth quarter, Enough is enough.

PhilW1957 said...

When Rivera was hired, many of us questioned why the Panthers would hire a guy turned down so many times for Head Coaching jobs around the league. Now the Panthers know what everyone else knew. Rivera's a DC, not a HC. Time to clean house.

Anonymous said...

similiar situation in the alabama tex a& m game.third down near the goal line .bama fakes the dive and throws a bootleg pass to the fb for the clinching touchdown.

Anonymous said...

Rivera seems like a nice guy who means well and is well liked by everyone he works with. Unfortunately, his teams lack any killer instinct, though (especially now that the mad Chud has left the building).

The 4th and 1 call today wasn't the call of a coach who wanted to win; it was the call of a coach who was afraid to lose.

Sorry, coach. Time to pack up and head out. Only question is if there's anyone on the staff that can be trusted to take over the team from here.

Ray said...

Don't know if firing Rivera would matter. Seems the big cat likes the conservative coaches. We'll get Fox III for next year and still go nowhere. PSL's for sale here cheep.

Anonymous said...

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a diferent result. well, Rivera must be insane. His team lives and breaths conservativism; at least on the Coordinator side. We don't maximize Cam's talents, we don't play to win offensively, we don't take risks. On the defense we run the same old zone D with few blitzes and expect a mediocre secondary to get the job done.

I liked Rivera coming in, but enough is enough. It has become painfully clear to me that he has not and either cannot or will not learn from his mistakes. Anywhere else (but the government) that will get you fired. Hasta la vista Ron!

Anonymous said...

It is sad that when the Fourth Quarter I texted a good friend with the question of how will the Panthers lose the game this week. I am not even surprised anymore with this.

Anonymous said...

Greedy Richardson didn't want to pay for a decent coach why raking in millions, I'm sick of this wake up fans we need a real owner to start with, our season is over!

NASTAR99 said...

Boone's Farm...

....told ya so.

kader joseph said...

It seems like the OC is holding Newton back. I think the Panthers picked him up initially because of what he can do not only in the air but on the ground. I understand not wanting to get your QB injured. But they are only using what they invested in by 50% Not really a great ROI for the fans. Letting him loose on the ground as well will free up receivers for the passes! I believe this needs to happen ASAP

Anonymous said...

Lets give lovie smith a call i belive he is unemployed at this time

Anonymous said...

Wanted:

1) New Starting QB
2) New Head Coach & Coordinators
3) 4 talented DB's that can shut receivers down.

At this rate Drafting players, we will need at least 2 drafts to fix the talent...

Anonymous said...

Take a hint Ron. Your secondary is in a ambulance on the way to the hospital. It's 4th and 1 at the 21. The Bills have no timeouts. A first down wins the game. Our all world QB led the league last year at his position running the ball. What to do?
Go play action giving your all world QB the option to run or pass. Kick a field goal and drag the secondary out of the ambulance and on the field. What to do...
You have got to be kidding me.

Terry said...

Rivera is a coward, always playing not to lose. With the addition of incorrigible conservative Shula, now we have 2 C's on the side. That's too much!

Anonymous said...

I'm not a Panthers fan, however it appears to me that the hand writing is on the wall for coach Rivera. You guy's have a new GM and I am sure he has someone in mind to bring in. Bye, bye coach, see you later, so long, etc

Anonymous said...

Rivera will go--of that be assured. The larger question for me is "What about Cam Newton?" By the end of this year, the Panthers will be in a position where they may likely throw $15-$18 million/year his way, and thereby blow the salary cap for the rest of the positions we need filled, i.e., the secondary. Maybe Cam is not the answer at all, regardless of who's the coach. Think about this: what do all the great QBs in the game do? They throw to multiple receivers time and again. Look at Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, Tom Brady, Peyton Manning. These guys involve as many receivers as are open to catch the ball. Cam Newton, on the other hand, looks for one or two guys, and then takes off running for his life. Sound like a franchise fix to you, or Vince Young 2.0? The bottom line is it takes an intelligent player to quickly identify the myriad defensive formations in today's NFL. The great QBs are smart, and sound smart, and they play smart. Cam Newton does the superman pose when he gets a 1st down and then wears a towel over his head to bow out from his leadership role as captain on the sidelines. So the guy's an athlete, a 6'5", 250lb. whale of an athlete. But can you lead and throw the ball where it needs to go? In this third season, I'm tired of wondering.

Anonymous said...

First People on here dogging Cam Newton. Please... He is not going anywhere. It's painfully obvious that Ron Rivera as an ex def Co has same problem previously ex Def Co coaches who were fired had: When the game is tight rein in the offense and play not to lose rather than to win. I read Scott's column last week and thought it was knee jerk to think you'd fire a coach after 2 games. BUT I can't argue against it after that game. QUESTION? Was it's Rivera's insistence to go hard defensively in the draft rather than not try to get Cam a 2nd WR in say D Hopkins who looks like a stud in Houston? Shula being promoted as QB coach rather than hiring a new Off Co sounds like a $$ save move by ownership. There is a fantasy writer out there keeps saying google David Shula. He kills offenses. I'd definitely reassess Shula as OFF Co. Rivera admitted the game plan was conservative last week then turns around and is conservative late. Frankly it was a mistake with a new GM not to can Rivera last season. With Newton as QB & the talent in the Def front 7. There are likely some good coaches interested in the job. There is hope down the road Carolina fans. Looking at division it was not likely this was the Panthers year anyway.

Anonymous said...

Im die-hard Panthers, but Ron has to go..... Oh my bad John Fox Jr.

Anonymous said...

The causes? 1) A QB who is not a winner. Talented, yes, winner, NO; 2) Another "let's not lose" coach instead of a "let's win" coach; 3) seriously depleted talent on both OL and DL and secondary; and 4) lack of a big-pay receiver other than Steve Smith. Will a coaching change make a difference? Maybe, but only in a game or two and not against this season's schedule. Much has been made about last season's strong finish, but what kind of talent did we beat?

Anonymous said...

Not gonna happen.

If JR fires Rivera and/or Shula he still has to pay them at least through the end of the season.

Still has to hire a new coach. Cower for instance would cost millions. Add that to the millions for firing and JR would have another heart attack.

Fans might stay away in droves but the tix are already sold and it would take a LOT of beers sold to make up the salaries.

Anonymous said...

Why doesn't Cam bother to attend an intense off-season QB school to learn how to throw the touch pass. Can you imagine him even attempting a fade? Seems his ego won't allow him to do more than gun the ball. Disappointing.

Andrea Smith said...

Scott, I agree completely. When are we going to set a goal to win??? Hire a coach that wants to win and has the reputation of winning. Stop getting these people who haven't been proven.

LL12 said...

The bottom line Ron Rivera has to part ways with the panthers. The panthers right now are lazy Cats with alot of talent and they need someone to bring it out of them in a way that helps them win games. He does nothing out side of the box to close out games. At this level when you make it to the NFL you have to think out side the box.

Anonymous said...

As far as I can see there is only problem to letting Rivera go: Who on this staff could replace him? Any thoughts?

Rick said...

It's time for Rivera and Newton to go. Rivera is too conservative and calls plays like a man who is afraid of losing his job, which he is. Newton is too stuck on himself and is not an accurate passer. Also, he is inept at reading defenses. What a waste of our money, get rid of him NOW while some team might give us a future pick. another two or three games like the last two and he won't be worth a 7th round pick in a trade.

Anonymous said...

You can't play to "not lose".....Thats how the Panthers have played the last two years. You have to "play to win" and have the other team adjust to what you are doing.

Anonymous said...

Rivera over his skis...terrible coach...Cam...great college players often too slow for NFL...Cam slow thinking on his feet, slow developing plays, inaccurate passer, seems wants to be a clothing designer more...4 & 1 call inexcusable...too afraid to lose also means you're too afraid to win...Rivera's gotta be gone by Tuesday or season is lost after only two games....Cardiac Kittens, once respected are now joke of league...sad.

alvin howard said...

Our coaches decision making does have some to do with it but I watch every single one of our panthers games and time and time again I see the simple play just not getting made, weather its a dropped pass, a missed tackle, a wide open opponent or simply just a bad pass like the 4 that were over thrown to ted ginn jr yesterday... the point is we can sit here all damn day say what the problems our and thats not gonna do s*it... were in almost every game we play and just cant seem to win... its time for my man cam and the rest of the team to get the "by any means necessary" attitude... were only 0-2 and our next five games are VERY winnable against the giants, cardinals, vikings, rams and buccaneers!!! We can realistically be 5-2 and 1-0 in our division before we play the rougher games starting with atl who we easily dhoulda beat twice last year. The team is very easily one of the more complete teams in the nfl or we wouldn't be within arms rech if all our games..... its time to buckle down and man the F*CK up and win like were supposed to cause im tired of losing sleep like last night over losses that shouldn't of happened.

Terrance Sibley said...

Please fire River and his corrdinators,bring in Lovie Smith he is a proven winner and bring in a good oc and dc please!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Bill Cowher

Bennie Boatwright said...

It's funny how some can say that Cam is the problem this year. Even though he has been sacked and hit multiple times, obviously told not to run the ball, and had receivers short arm balls thrown there way. Every profession QB makes bad throws at some point. Not even Peyton, Brady, Rodgers, or Marino were perfect! Cam is a stud with limited options. Be careful what you wish for Charlotte. Do you remember losing out on Kobe Bryant???

BigPoppa973 said...

I keep seeing people comment on Cam Newton not showing humility. Since when has being humble been apart of any sport's gameplan. Humble and NFL football are like oil and water, better yet ammonia and bleach.

Anonymous said...

Enough is enough! Someone in the organization needs to be held accountable. Yesterday's loss was complete ridiculousness. Cam is too slow to release the ball, giving DBs to much time to recover. Derek Anderson has better decision-making ability than Cam.

I say fire Rivera. I'm tired on timid coaches who show no emotion. We're playing "not to lose" rather than beating teams. We turned it off prior to halftime in the Seattle game, and played soft at the 35 yard line in Buffalo. Seems like these coaches want to play safe when we don't have the defense to back it up.

Anonymous said...

This organization is a joke. The Panthers are set up as a partnership to make money. That's all. JR and gang will spend just enough to keep the money machine rolling but never enough to truly build a "team". Its simple cost/benefit analysis. Set your goals to average, its more profitable that way. As fans, we are left holding the bag year in year out on false hopes. Thanks Jerry, nice work.

Anonymous said...

I'm a die hard fan of the Panthers who will not be wasting my time watching anymore until they get rid of Rivera.

Anonymous said...

WAKE UP RICHARDSON!!! Stop being so Cheap!!! We will never have a winning season with the decisions being made year after year. Cam Newton has to go he is not accurate, he over threw receivers 2 or 3 times yesterday in what could have been touchdowns or massive yardage. Rivera bad, bad coaching...REALLY!! you go for the field goal when a touchdown beats you with all that time on the clock. Something has to be done, i'm so sick of being disappointed every year.

Anonymous said...

So whose the coach going to be? Cowher doesn't seem interested and been gone too long. Gruden likes the tv spot too much and been gone too long. Lovie Smith is so so. Norv Turner would but shouldn't. WHO???

Anonymous said...

Chud, where are you???

Anonymous said...

Everyone blaming Cam Newton has no idea the basic concepts of football. The QB in this case does not call the plays, the QB also does not block for himself and he cant make recievers catch the ball. Is he the most accurate qb in the world... NO. But is he the reason we are losing NO. Rivera has no idea how to manage a game, shula is pretty terrible... If you want a franchise quarterback you have to build talen around him and protection... We have not had a second reciever sinse musi!!! think on that.

Anonymous said...

Cam Newton is not the entire blame of the Panthers lost..i'm not saying that at all. However, I do believe he needs to tighten up, I didn't like Jake Delhomme either but at least he threw the ball in stride to the receiver. He knew where to put the ball. Cam doesn't do that. He over throws or under throws the ball every time or sometimes even behind the receiver and they have to come back to the ball. They can never catch the ball in stride..all that being said Ron Rivera must go! Cam can work on his accuracy, Rivera just plain sucks as a coach PERIOD!!!!

Anonymous said...

All I am going to say is im a die Hard Panther fan. And my Coach has no heart at all. I don't know how many times we have to be on fourth and one or fourth and inchs across the 50 game about to be over if we get a first down and he gives the other team the ball back every time... damn give us a chance not them. I am so done I don't know what eles to say but give me (Cowher) please! Or buy Ron a heart!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Fire Rivera this week or at the latest next week. Go out and sign one of the 3 to help our depleted secondary Kerry Rhodes, Kenny Phillips or Jordan Babineaux. Rhodes would be the best and is an definite upgrade. Got cap room lets use some and not sit on it!

Steve said...

If Richardson doesn't fire Rivera by the bye week, he owes Hurney an apology.

Anonymous said...

Firing Rivera is not the answer. Give him the remainder of the season to turn iy around.