Panthers hire Frank Reich.
Carolina’s search for a new head coach ends with the team announcing the hiring of Frank Reich.
of Carolina Panthers They were looking for a new leader and they found one on Thursday Frank Reich.
Former Indianapolis Colts head coach He returns to the city with a famous work historyThat includes being the first quarterback in Panthers history. He won a Super Bowl as offensive coordinator with the Philadelphia Eagles and finished 40-33-1 in his five years as the Colts’ head coach.
And while the aforementioned accolades look impressive on paper, Reich’s ability to lead a young Panthers locker room and develop a franchise quarterback will be key to his success in Carolina.
Reich is getting a second chance to lead the franchise after him. This past season in Indianapolis, a sad failure. And he believes one of his former players — who worked with him in Philadelphia and Indianapolis — will take advantage of his opportunity in Carolina.
“First and foremost, they’re going to have a young quarterback, and Frank has a great history of developing young quarterbacks,” former NFL tight end Trey Burton told The Observer on Thursday. “His system is not very complicated. It’s not something that takes three, four or five years for the quarterback to go down. He’d be better off picking up his brother — whether it’s the draft or free agency.
“And he’s a little different guy than the last two head coaches the Panthers have had. He’s a guy with a proven resume in the NFL and someone who’s had success and really competitive teams over the last couple of years.
Burton played in the NFL for seven seasons. During those three campaigns, Rich served as Burton’s offensive coordinator or head coach. Following the 2017 season, Reich led backup Nick Foles on a miraculous run through Super Bowl LI before heading to the Colts and hoisting the Lombardi Trophy.
After their success together in Philadelphia, Burton is eager to join Reick in 2020 with the Colts. A versatile player, Reich wanted to use his playmaking creativity, a trait he is sure to use in the new Panthers offense.
“He’s very dangerous because he likes to play tricks, he likes different looks,” Burton said. “He likes to keep his form the same, but he’s also very good at running and different things. He’s not sloppy at all – he’s very creative.”
During their meeting, Reich outscored Burton and the Colts 11-5. Although the team lost in the first round of the playoffs, Burton looked back on that season with fond memories of the way Rich led the team.
“His analogy was, ‘We don’t ride the waves of the ocean. We create our own wave of positive motivation and positive thinking,’” Burton said. “So no matter what the situation is, whether it’s the last game or the previous game or the situation, we’re going to go forward and create our own momentum.”
Burton describes Reich as an approachable mentor who can talk to players about anything. Rich’s even-keeled nature makes him easy to relate to. And according to Burton, even though he’s a serious leader, he doesn’t mind having fun or joking around with the players.
“He’s the kind of guy you want to play well because he’s a good guy,” Burton said. “It’s like having a best friend – you want your best friend to do well. You don’t want your best friend to be mad at you. You want to be there for him every chance you get, and you stick up for him because he treats you so well. You never worry about Frank losing his mind over someone or (about swearing at someone). He’s pretty cool.”
And while there’s no mistaking Rich’s demeanor for being overbearing at all, Burton believes he hands accountability to his staff and that the head coach-locker room will benefit from his hands-on approach.
“There’s a small percentage of men who want people to yell at them and yell at them,” Burton said. “There are always guys on staff for that, but the majority of the NFL community is big guys who want to talk like big guys. And they want to talk like a big guy instead of yelling like you’re in college or high school.
Rich has been a player in an NFL locker room before. His experiences, which occurred before most of his players were born, help him understand the trials and tribulations of the locker room during the season.
After spending 14 years under an NFL helmet, he has a perspective that few other head coaches have been able to capture. That attitude should help him as he prepares to overcome a locker room that has embraced the coaching style of the interim head coach. Steve Wilkes.
“He definitely plays a big role because he’s been in the game and he’s done it before,” Burton said. “He mostly knows what we’re going through.”
This story was originally published January 26, 2023 3:36 pm