Jim Caldwell explains why he took senior assistant job with Panthers

In a surprise move to many, Jim Caldwell—who was reportedly not interested in taking up a job that would’ve made him anything but a head coach—took up a job that made him something other than a head coach.

Last Tuesday, the 68-year-old—who had also previously interviewed for the team’s head-coaching vacancy—agreed to join the Carolina Panthers as a senior assistant. And exactly one week later, in his first press conference as a member of the organization, he explained why.

“Yeah, ‘cause it makes sense in a number of different reasons,” he replied. “And when you say outside of the relationship with Frank [Reich], I think that’s one of the main reasons. Guy who I’ve worked with, who I know. He knows me. He knows my strengths, my weaknesses as well—and there are many. So that’s a huge reason.”

Reich and Caldwell had worked alongside one another in Indianapolis from 2006 to 2011. Caldwell, in fact, promoted Reich to his quarterbacks coach and wide receivers coach when he headed the Colts from 2009 to 2011.

Caldwell, in addition to the desirable location of the franchise, also mentioned the positive interactions he’d had with owner David Tepper and general manager Scott Fitterer.

“But also the organization,” he added as another reason for his decision. “I had an opportunity to visit with Mr. Tepper and Scott and the rest of the crew that were doing the interview process and felt a really good synergy there as well. So that was also part of it.”

It’s clear that Reich, Tepper and Fitterer are building something new and exciting in Carolina. And the fact that Caldwell has bought into it is a major testament to where the Panthers may be going.

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Story originally appeared on Panthers Wire