Panthers reportedly request interview with Lions OC Ben Johnson

And now for your least surprising development of the Carolina Panthers’ 2024 head-coaching search . . .

As first reported by NFL Network insider Tom Pelissero on Monday evening, the team has requested permission to interview Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson. Johnson is currently perceived as the top candidate for the opening.

The organization’s interest in the Charleston, S.C. native and University of North Carolina product began during last year’s head-coaching hunt. But the then-36-year-old, after receiving requests from multiple teams, withdrew his name from all consideration to return to the Lions.

Johnson has spent the last four seasons in Detroit—where he’s also served as an offensive quality control coach, a tight ends coach and a passing game coordinator. He took over the offensive play-calling duties beginning in 2022.

Since then, the Lions have boasted one of the NFL’s most potent attacks. Detroit ranked fourth in total offense last season (380.0 yards per game), then bumped it up a tick to third overall this year (394.8).

Story originally appeared on Panthers Wire