coach Ron Rivera will sit down with team owner Jerry Richardson on Saturday to discuss the future.
Richardson hasn't commented publicly on Rivera's status since October but has told Rivera that he wanted to see improvement in the team, The Charlotte Observer reported Friday.
The Panthers finished with a 7-9 record and in second place in the NFC South Division following a 44-38 victory on Sunday over New Orleans.
After the Panthers fired general manager Marty Hurney in October, they went 6-4 and won their final four games of the season.
According to The Observer, Rivera said Richardson has maintained his support of the coach, who completed his second season with the Panthers after serving as defensive coordinator for San Diego.
If the Panthers decide to let Rivera go, he would become the eighth NFL head coach to lose his job since the end of the season.
Carolina shouldn't panic, though, in getting a late start on a potential search compared with other teams that fired coaches earlier in the week.
"In terms of taking their time, it's hard for me to believe that waiting a few days is going to put anyone at a disadvantage," former Green Bay Packers vice president Andrew Brandt told The Observer. "You don't need a coach until sometime in the spring when you actually have players to coach. But I know everyone wants to jump in and go after the candidates they think are the best."
The Panthers also are set to begin their search for an new general manager. Among those The Observer mentioned as candidates for interviews are New York Giants director of college scouting Marc Ross and Giants senior pro personnel analyst Dave Gettleman, Panthers interim GM Brandon Beane, and Tennessee Titans vice president of player personnel Lake Dawson.
- Sports & Recreation
- American Football
- Carolina Panthers
- Ron Rivera
- Jerry Richardson
- The Charlotte Observer