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Carolina Panthers fire head coach Matt Rhule after 1-4 start

The Carolina Panthers announced Monday that they have fired head coach Matt Rhule after a 1-4 start to the 2022 season. Assistant coach Steve Wilks was named interim head coach.

Rhule and the Panthers opened the 2022 campaign with a 26-24 loss to the Cleveland Browns, and the New York Giants beat the Panthers 19-16 in Week 2. The Panthers earned their lone win so far this season when they beat the New Orleans Saints 22-14 on Sept. 14, and the Arizona Cardinals beat the Panthers 26-16 in Week 4.  This past Sunday, San Francisco 49ers beat the Panthers 37-15 in Charlotte, N.C.  The Panthers now have the worst offense in the NFL in terms of total yards. They also totaled the fewest first downs and ranked 24th in points for through five weeks.

Rhule, 47, was hired in 2020 after he served as the head coach at Baylor for three seasons. He also worked as head coach at Temple and as a position coach for the New York Giants. Rhule’s Panthers went 11-27 over the past three seasons, and they have never made the playoffs. Rhule led the Panthers to a 5-11 record in 2020, and in 2021 the Panthers were 5-12.

Wilks was the Panthers’ secondary coach and defensive pass game coordinator to start the season, and he was the defensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns and University of Missouri in 2019 and 2021, respectively. Wilks spent the 2012 through 2017 seasons as a defensive backs coach, defensive coordinator and assistant head coach for the Panthers, and led the Arizona Cardinals to a 3-13 record in 2018, his lone season as an NFL head coach.

Editorial credit: Jeff Bukowski /

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