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January 17, 2011

Panthers agree to deal with OC

    The Carolina Panthers have made their offensive coordinator decision, and are now only waiting for a contract to be finalized.

    The Panthers have agreed to a deal with former San Diego assistant head coach/tight ends Rob Chudzinski to be their new play-caller, according to two league sources.

    They apparently aren't going to be adding UFL coach Jay Gruden, who interviewed here over the weekend. Jim Gruden, the father of candidate Jay and former Bucs coach Jon, said that his son told him Monday he was out of the mix.

    "He said it looked like they were going to hire the guy from San Diego," the elder Gruden said.

    Chudzinski was the first choice of new coach Ron Rivera.

    The 42-year-old assistant has had stints as coordinator with the Cleveland Browns (2007-08, where he followed former Panthers OC Jeff Davidson) and at his alma mater, the University of Miami.

    Chudzinski was a part of two national championships as a player, and coached three All-American tight ends (Bubba Franks, Jeremy Shockey, Kellen Winslow).

    In 2007, the Browns were eighth in the league in scoring, with quarterback Derek Anderson throwing for 3,787 yards and 29 touchdowns, with 19 interceptions. 

    It also illustrates how circular the coaching business can be. Chudzinski replaced Jeff Davidson as Browns offensive coordinator in 2007 and does the same thing here. Chudzinski was replaced in Cleveland by Brian Daboll. Daboll was just hired by Miami to replace Dan Henning, whom Davidson replaced here in 2007. Think about that for a moment.

-- Darin Gantt

Posted by Observer Sports on January 17, 2011 at 05:41 PM | Permalink


We can only hope he is NOT like Jeff Davidson!

Posted by: CyndiLou | Jan 17, 2011 5:49:50 PM

Love this hire. I was hoping he would get the OC job. I know that when he was with Clevland he came up with some great game plans against top teams. He was always agressive and attacked the defense.

Posted by: c_boss | Jan 17, 2011 6:00:42 PM

Another Browns reject, great!

Posted by: Phillip | Jan 17, 2011 6:01:35 PM

so, why we not getting Gruden? He was supposed to just be QB coach anyway.

Posted by: Chowtime | Jan 17, 2011 6:09:27 PM

Worrisome because its another Browns coach.. but I have heard a lot of great things from this guy, and I am sure he learned a lot under Norv Turner.

Posted by: Gamble20 | Jan 17, 2011 6:10:13 PM

Good Hire, Chud was part of the play calling at San Diego ,Bolts never had problems scoring points.He has a very good reputation in the league.

Posted by: i BELIEVE | Jan 17, 2011 6:10:40 PM

Great Hire...!!

Posted by: Catsnmbr1Fan | Jan 17, 2011 6:14:35 PM

Great Hire...!!

Posted by: Catsnmbr1Fan | Jan 17, 2011 6:15:46 PM

If you look at the record from Chud's 2 year stint in Cleveland, he clearly is not Davidson.

Posted by: heelfan#1 | Jan 17, 2011 6:20:34 PM

Just as long as he brings something different. Jeff Davidson never really separated him self from the Henning play calling while here and our offense showed.

Posted by: Tyler | Jan 17, 2011 6:42:40 PM

@ Tyler...

I think that had to a lot to do with Fox.

Posted by: tdubs74 | Jan 17, 2011 6:50:57 PM

davidson had success his first year here bringing us double trouble but since then its kind of been down hill. not bringing anymore creativity to the offense.

Posted by: jedijore | Jan 17, 2011 6:53:36 PM

What does the hiring of Chudzinski as OC have to do with whether Gruden is hired as QB coach?

Another case of incomplete reporting by the COs great sportswriters!!!

Posted by: DBIGCAT | Jan 17, 2011 7:02:06 PM

Great....maybe now I'll get a fair shot at being a NFL QB

Posted by: Clausen | Jan 17, 2011 7:09:46 PM

Well DBIGCAT he was up for the OC position not the QB coach position. Hiring Chud ended that need. Maybe if you put as much effort into reading as ripping people you'd know that.


I like this hire and I look forward to seeing who will be the QB coach.

Posted by: John | Jan 17, 2011 7:10:52 PM

So far I'm liking the new hires, hopefully things will come together especially when the draft and free agency starts up.

Posted by: tarheel23 | Jan 17, 2011 7:43:55 PM

I'm continuing to be pleasantly surprised by the Panthers coaching hires!

Posted by: PantherDave | Jan 17, 2011 7:55:45 PM

Hey what about skipper? will he come back to Panthers? He is really good rb coach! He made a lot running back productive. Bring him back!

Posted by: sean | Jan 17, 2011 8:10:16 PM

@ sean - he accepted a coaching position in Denver after the first day John Fox was hired. It was undecided what coaching position. Since he has been with Fox for (13) years, there was very little chance he would stay here as a RB's coach for a new HC.

Posted by: Catsnmbr1Fan | Jan 17, 2011 8:23:54 PM

Well, John, maybe if you put as much effort into actually reading then you would know it was reported he was interviewed for the QB coaching position, not the OC!

Posted by: DBIGCAT | Jan 17, 2011 9:07:16 PM

Im excited! Great hire!

Posted by: paul | Jan 17, 2011 9:11:16 PM

Steve Reed reported today that Skipper may stay after all. He is not sure he wants to move on at this point in his career. Plus, he would not be RB coach in Denver.

Posted by: Phil | Jan 17, 2011 9:14:01 PM

Hey Jimmy, say hello to Billy Volek.

Posted by: Steve | Jan 17, 2011 9:50:48 PM

"Chudzinski was a part of two national championships as a player, and coached three All-American tight ends (Bubba Franks, Jeremy Shockey, Kellen Winslow)"....maybe he can finally get our TE's into the flow. Jeff King would have to hold on to the ball.

Posted by: tom | Jan 17, 2011 9:52:11 PM

Please tell me he will be a substantial improvement over Davidson, who appeared challenged to coach Pop Warner teams. Didn't Cleveland go 5-11 in 2009 and '10? Why hire a coordinator from a dedicated loser? Until Hurney goes, we will endure records between 7-9 and 9-7. He needs to go back to being a beat writer for his old non-existent newspaper.

Posted by: PantherFancier | Jan 17, 2011 10:04:43 PM

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