Matt Rhule is rebuilding his coaching staff for the 2022 season.
The Panthers have parted ways with three assistant coaches — offensive line coach Pat Meyer, defensive line coach Frank Okam and special teams coach Chase Blackburn — according to a report from NFL insider Ian Rapoport.
The #Panthers have fired OL coach Pat Meyer, special teams coach Chase Blackburn and DL coach Frank Okam, source say.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 11, 2022
This report should come as no surprise for several reasons. For starters, head coach Matt Rhule is definitely on the hot seat after a disappointing — no, disastrous — end to the 2021 season where the Panthers lost 12 of their final 14 games after starting out 3-0, including a pain-inducing seven-game losing streak to close out the year in last place in the NFC South and ‘clinching’ the No. 6 pick in the 2022 draft.
This news is also not surprising because if you look at the three biggest areas where the Panthers struggled this year, you’ll notice that they were a result of poor play from the offensive line (no protection for any of the quarterbacks we punished by putting them on the field), the defensive line (atrocious run defense) and special teams (I don’t have enough time to go through all of the issues here).
Rhule told the media yesterday that he will evaluate the staff ‘from top to bottom’ and these three firings appear to be the first results of that evaluation. There will probably be other deck chairs reshuffled on this sinking ship before long, and we’ll provide any new information on that front as it becomes available.