Matt Rhule was let go by the Carolina Panthers in October after a 1-4 start to the 2022 season; “What was a four-year plan very quickly became a two-year, five-game plan”; the former Temple and Baylor coach returned to college football, landing an eight-year deal to lead Nebraska
Last update: 02/12/22 4:06 p.m.
Former Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule reflected on his two-and-a-half-year tenure at the helm of the NFL franchise with the conclusion that “I just don’t know if I was in good shape there. -down”.
Rhule was dismissed five games into the 2022 season, with the team 1-4 and his overall record in charge 11-27. But, speaking on The season with Peter Schrager podcast, Rhule expressed his frustration with the project he signed up for and who he has become.
Rhule was hired by the Panthers in January 2020 after being lured away from college football and Baylor, signing a seven-year contract worth $62 million.
“At the end of the day, we talked about, ‘Hey, we’re going to have a four-year plan, a five-year plan,'” Rhule said.
“If you say to me, ‘Hey, we have a two-year plan,’ then I’m going to sign a bunch of free agents and do it. [differently].
“What was a four-year plan became a two-year, five-game plan very quickly.”
“I’m not mad about it at the end of the day. I get it, but if it’s going to be that quick then we’re going to sign other free agents, we’re going to do the hit trade, we’re going to do these things.”
Knowing how things ultimately turned out, Rhule added, “I think I probably would have just taken another job.
“A great place with great people, but I just don’t know if I was fit there.”
Following Rhule’s departure in early October, Panthers owner David Tepper said: “It’s a funny thing, this thing called patience. If you ask the average fan, they’d think I’ve been ridiculously patient.
“I think you have to have a good dose of patience and [look at] the progress that is being made. Do we earn more? Are we moving forward differently? In all of these situations that we’ve talked about, it hasn’t been that.”
Highlights of the Denver Broncos vs. Carolina Panthers from Week 12 of the NFL season.
Since Rhule’s departure, the Panthers have gone 3-4 under interim head coach Steve Wilks, with the team still pretty much in playoff contention at 4-8 in an NFC South split. poor.
Rhule’s frustration with his dismissal stems from the belief that the team is in line to compete next season with some adjustments to the roster.
“I think the trajectory we were on was correct,” he said. “It was having a team that could make a big trade next year.
Week 13: GOODBYE WEEK; Week 14: @ Seattle Seahawks (6-5); Week 15: against the Pittsburgh Steelers (4-7); Week 16: vs Detroit Lions (4-8); Week 17: @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-6); Week 18: @ New Orleans Saints (4-8)
“I think you see the signs of that right now. When they play well in attack, they win. There’s a good defense there. I give Steve all the credit, I give the coaches all the credit, but I am part of the building process.”
He added: “The only thing I didn’t want to do was leave the guys early because I thought the team would have a chance if this thing started to click…with maybe the big free agent signing this year for get over the top, I think the Panthers could win the NFC South for years to come.”
After less than two months away, Rhule has returned to the college ranks, hired by Nebraska last week to lead the Cornhuskers, who have endured six straight losing seasons and last played a bowling game in 2016. .
Rhule’s head coaching record in college is 47-43, successfully reviving programs at Temple (from two wins in 2013 to 10 two years later) and Baylor (one win in 2017 to 10 in 2019) before making the jump to the NFL.
“Everything happens for a reason,” Rhule said. “I am here [at Nebraska] and, you know what, I’m probably supposed to be here.”
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