The Carolina Panthers have decided to fire head coach Frank Reich after just 11 games this season, and it's one of the biggest organizational failures we've seen in recent time. Frank Reich was hired by the Panthers this offseason and was seemingly pulling all of the right strings. He hired a coaching staff that was celebrated by NFL media and fans alike. The Panthers traded up to get the #1 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, another move that was widely celebrated.
This team was seemingly making all the right moves in the NFL Draft, free agency, and via trade, but the on-field product has been abysmal.
The Panthers currently have the worst record in the NFL at 1-10, and they don't have really anything to show for it. One of the worst developments for Carolina this season is the fact that they had to trade their 2024 first-round pick as well as star receiver DJ Moore to the Chicago Bears in order to obtain the #1 pick in 2023.
That trade was the epitome of Peter robbing Paul and the Panthers set themselves back in a big way by apparently missing on the Bryce Young selection. The jury is still very much out on Bryce Young, of course, but it hurts that Carolina passed on CJ Stroud with that selection as we all watch Stroud absolutely ball out for the Houston Texans (who are 6-5) this season.
So, the Panthers don't have CJ Stroud. They don't have DJ Moore. They don't have the #1 overall pick in 2024.
This is an organizational failure to the highest degree. If the plan was to trade up into the #1 overall slot in 2023, the Panthers should have had a plan going into the hiring process, or they should have heard clear plans from any of the prospective candidates about what they were going to try to do if they acquired that pick. At this point, it's hard to argue the Panthers would be worse off with someone like Anthony Richardson over Bryce Young, to be quite honest.
It was just a complete whiff by the organization. Owner David Tepper has no one to blame but himself. The Panthers kept GM Scott Fitterer around and they approached this offseason like they were a coach and QB away from being a true contender. They have lost so much value by not trading Brian Burns for multiple first-round picks when presented the opportunity.
I get that Frank Reich may not be the best coach, but he can simultaneously be a scapegoat as well. The Panthers' ownership made this bed they're lying in right now, and it doesn't look good.