Panthers to retain Chris Tabor, James Campen on 2023 coaching staff
Even with a new head coach, the Carolina Panthers wanted a little continuity on their staff. And now, they have it—-with two of the most well-regarded men in the building.
As first reported by Joe Person of The Athletic on Monday night, the Panthers have opted to retain special teams coordinator Chris Tabor and offensive line coach James Campen. They are now the first known assistants on Frank Reich’s coaching staff for 2023.
Tabor was hired before the start of the 2022 campaign by former head coach Matt Rhule, who revamped his personnel heading into what was his final season with the organization. He’d go on to lead one of the top overall units in the entire league, as the Panthers finished fourth in Rick Gosselin’s 2022 NFL Special Teams Rankings.
Kicker Eddy Piñeiro, a late summer addition under the guidance of Tabor, was one of a handful of bright spots for the group—knocking through 94.3 percent (33-for-35) of his field goal tries. Punter Johnny Hekker, additionally, amassed a franchise record and league-best 39 punts inside the 20-yard line.
Campen, also a hire by Rhule, played an instrumental role in what was the best Panthers offensive line in recent memory. The trench of rookie left tackle Ikem Ekwonu, left guard Brady Christensen, center Bradley Bozeman, right guard Austin Corbett and right tackle Taylor Moton helped the offense regain an old-school, ground-and-pound identity that had been missing under the previous regime.
Before the news, Person had also reported that owner David Tepper and general manager Scott Fitterer had encouraged head coaching candidates to keep Tabor and Campen on their prospective staffs. So at least Rhule left Tepper a few nice parting gifts on the way out.
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