"We're going to get the best of the best"; How Frank Reich's Coaching Staff Can Elevate the Roster
Frank Reich has been on the job as Carolina's HC for a few months now, and at this point, he has finalized his coaching staff. Let's take a look into what sets this coaching staff apart from others across the league:
New Blood (and Familiar Faces)
After the initial hiring of Reich was made official, many fans and NFL officials expected the former Colts' head coach to poach a considerable amount of coaches from his old team. However, he took quite the opposite approach in assembling his offensive and defensive staff; in fact, only Parks Frazier, former offensive coordinator for the Colts, was rehired in Carolina.
The Charlotte native grabbed coaches from Denver (Ejiro Evero, Bert Watts, Peter Hansen, Dom Capers), Los Angeles (Jonathan Cooley, Thomas Brown), Carolina's previous coaching regime (James Campen, Robert Kugler, Chris Tabor), and many more from the professional and college coaching ranks. In his opening press conference, Frank Reich expressed his desire for this coaching staff to have a "diversity of thought." Needless to say, it seems he has kept his word.
As evidenced in places like Detroit with Dan Campbell, a former player, we've seen players rally around their coach because they know their coach can empathize with their victories and defeats. We've seen Frank Reich, a former player himself, take the same approach with his first staff in Carolina. The hires of Thomas Brown, James Campen, Duce Staley, and Josh McCown among others, spent time as players with the Falcons, Packers, Eagles, and Jets respectively.
Because of their prior experience in the league as a player, they earn instant credibility with the team and are generally able to better communicate with the players.
Not only did Reich target coaches that were outside his realm of familiarity, but he targeted elite offensive and defensive minds like Ejiro Evero (DC) and Thomas Brown (OC). Evero's background is rooted in Vic Fangio's 3-4, which has bottled up the NFL's modern-day passing game. Players like Brian Burns and Frankie Luvu will get the opportunity to rush the passer off the edge and accumulate 10+ sacks; Ejiro Evero loves to bring extra pressure (35.6%, 3rd in blitz percentage in 2022), even more so than his predecessor in Fangio.
Offensive coordinator Thomas Brown hails from the Sean McVay tree, and is sure to bring exciting new schemes and strategies to the Panthers' offense this year. Being a former running back, he understands the importance of toting the rock but he also won't be afraid to let our rookie quarterback sling it in certain situations either.
Both of these coordinators will likely be top candidates in the head coaching cycle next off-season if the Panthers see success in 2023, so fans should not be surprised if some coaches leave.
Throughout the entire process, Reich remained open-minded and accepting of suggestions, all with the intent to build the best Panthers' coaching staff in quite a while. Who was your favorite hire? What hire did you like the least? Leave your comments below :)