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January 18, 2013

Shula gets Panthers' OC job; Proehl, Rodgers promoted

The Panthers have promoted quarterbacks coach Mike Shula to offensive coordinator, a source with knowledge of the situation said Friday.

Shula, 47, is expected to continue to coach Cam Newton and the rest of the team's quarterbacks. He replaces Rob Chudzinski, who left last week to become Cleveland's head coach.

The Panthers also promoted two other assistant coaches. Assistant receivers coach Ricky Proehl will take over for fired receivers coach Fred Graves, and interim special teams coordinator Richard Rodgers will run the special teams.

Rodgers, the assistant special teams coach last season, took over the unit in November after Brian Murphy was fired.

The moves leave Panthers coach Ron Rivera with two openings for position coaches – linebackers and running backs. Former Panthers running back coach Jim Skipper is in Charlotte today interviewing for his old position, according to a source.

The Panthers also have a vacancy for an offensive quality control coach after Scott Turner joined Chudzinski in Cleveland.

Shula was one of three candidates to interview with Panthers coach Ron Rivera and general manager Dave Gettleman. The Panthers also talked to former Browns coach Pat Shurmur and Cincinnati assistant coach Hue Jackson, the former Oakland head coach.

The hiring of Shula allows the Panthers to continue running the offensive system installed by Chudzinski – a mix of a vertical passing attack and a zone-read package that takes advantage of Newton's running ability.

Newton ran for 741 yards last season to become the first quarterback to lead his team in rushing since Donovan McNabb in 2000. Newton broke Peyton Manning's rookie passing record and was the AP Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2011 in first season working with Shula.

Shula, a former Alabama quarterback who coached the Crimson Tide from 2003-06, has 21 years of NFL coaching experience.

But his only previous stint as an offensive coordinator was a struggle. When Shula ran Tampa Bay's offense from 1996-99, the Buccaneers never finished higher than 22nd in total offense.

When the Bucs advanced to the NFC championship game in 1999, Shula's offense – with Shaun King at quarterback – was 28th in total offense.

--Joseph Person


Posted by Observer Sports on January 18, 2013 at 04:14 PM | Permalink


Depressing. Look at the situation in Cleveland and then look here. I have no hope for the Panthers. 7-9 or 8-8 forever.

Posted by: Dave | Jan 18, 2013 4:18:45 PM

Stupid! How could they pass on Hue Jackson for freaking Shula! Just dumb! The new GM is not off to a good start!

Posted by: Jason | Jan 18, 2013 4:20:47 PM

This question has yet to be answered: Why does Shula "allow" Carolina to continue the Chud offense? He didn't run that at Tampa. He was a QB coach here...does he have *any* prior experience running Chud's type of offense? I am just blown away that this "fact" keeps getting repeated without any context.

Posted by: Jonathan | Jan 18, 2013 4:20:54 PM

Shula is the best we could do? Chud's offense didn't work all that well. No running game (Except for the QB). Why would we want to continue down the same road. why hire a guy who's record as OC stinks

Posted by: Lee | Jan 18, 2013 4:21:43 PM


Posted by: Dan | Jan 18, 2013 4:23:09 PM

Why not hire hue jackson. What a dumb move

Posted by: chr | Jan 18, 2013 4:27:50 PM

This is not a shock. Rivera does not want to change the entire offensive system, and this was the easiest way to keep it similar to the last 2 years. Im not thrilled with the pick, but like all things...you can never tell how it will work out. When shula was in tampa, tampa sucked, so maybe it wasnt all his fault for a bad offensive performance. Time will Tell

Posted by: BMG23 | Jan 18, 2013 4:29:36 PM

Shula isn't going to run the exact same offense Chud did. I'm sure most of the stuff will be the same, but HOPEFULLY, Shula has a little more sense and leans on that backfield we have and doesn't ask Cam to do it all. Here's HOPING!!

Posted by: Swizzle52 | Jan 18, 2013 4:35:46 PM

They want us to continue to be fans without providing us any hope!! Another year of pain and suffering, only a hand full of winning seasons in our entire history. When does it stop?

Posted by: Juice123 | Jan 18, 2013 4:37:18 PM

Jerry what in the heck are u doing why cant you just leave the panthers you make bad decision after bad decision. I just through up all over my laptop when i heard this why do the panthers not want to be good, there just okay with being mediocre.

Posted by: James | Jan 18, 2013 4:39:23 PM

a promotion for a coach who didn't accomplish something relevant is a suicide pill for a coach in hot seat.

Posted by: hgm | Jan 18, 2013 4:39:50 PM

Not gonna get what you want when the best you can offer is 1 year with caveats (Rivera improving being the primary). That simple folks.

Posted by: Fan | Jan 18, 2013 4:45:21 PM

This move seems like it was made purely for financial reasons, which is the WORST reason to ever hire a coach.

Posted by: TP | Jan 18, 2013 4:45:58 PM

Are you serious. It is starting to get real tough to be a Panthers fan. WHAT ARE WE DOING. Shula has no track record of being, why did we hire this turd to be OC. Come on Panthers get it together.

Posted by: Sterling | Jan 18, 2013 4:46:24 PM

Keep the FAITH PANTHERS. You havet to mine the coal to get to the diamond!!!!!!

Posted by: Mango | Jan 18, 2013 4:49:52 PM

I am so depressed. I cannot beleive this! Isn't this the last year of Cam's rookie contract? This should make him want to leave for sure after the coming season is over and we have another losing record. BORING, BORING, BORING!

Posted by: SB | Jan 18, 2013 4:50:46 PM

It all comes down to cost savings. Hue Jackson millions, Shula 35 bucks

Posted by: Robert | Jan 18, 2013 4:52:43 PM

This reaks of Rivera not wanting someone on staff who could replace him as head coach mid-season next year.

Posted by: Hue Jackson | Jan 18, 2013 4:53:06 PM

Thats worth 125 million. Assume they will also need a new QB coach, unless they will just promote a ball boy.

Posted by: jbw | Jan 18, 2013 4:54:01 PM

I called the Proehl pick the day Rivera fired Graves! Good choice, IMO. I think Rodgers has earned the ST spot since taking over for Murphy, too.

I like seeing Jim Skipper in town! He really seemed to be able to work magic with RB's from deep on the depth chart, like Nick Goings and Dee Brown, and of course he was there at the beginning for DWill and JStew. I'd love to see him back at RB's.

As for the Shula pick...disappointing. All I can see is Tampa Bay circa 1999. Painful. Shula may have good QB cred, but he's already proven that he really doesn't have what it takes to excel as a coordinator.

Posted by: Cam_Rocks | Jan 18, 2013 4:56:21 PM

Reserve judgement until you see the end product.

Posted by: PantherHead | Jan 18, 2013 4:58:25 PM

I like Shula

Posted by: Richard | Jan 18, 2013 5:04:33 PM

Its sad. I hope we are wrong about shula and he doesn't run it on first and second down to throw it on 3rd and long. We hate sink and donk offenses. Jerry needs to wake up. I think they didn't want to hire a new oc outside of organization because knowing he could be gone with Rivera if it doesn't work this year but shula better stay aggressive and unpredicatble otherwise might as well let the trainer call plays

Posted by: jonathan | Jan 18, 2013 5:05:16 PM

i think shula will be fine! some of you guys are worrying a little to much!!!

Posted by: Van | Jan 18, 2013 5:10:17 PM

Agrees with Cam rocks

Posted by: L.T | Jan 18, 2013 5:10:24 PM

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