The Carolina Panthers are on a slide, and they made a change before the season is over.
The Panthers have fired general manager Marty Hurney. It was Hurney’s second stint as the team’s GM, after serving as Carolina’s GM from 2002-12. He landed that role again in 2017, when he was brought on as interim GM before getting the job again permanently.
— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) December 21, 2020
Under new coach Matt Rhule, the Panthers started 3-2 but have lost eight of nine since.
According to the Panthers’ site, owner David Tepper “respected Hurney's traditional approach but hopes to blend more of a data-driven process into the football operation.”
“I think sometimes you just need a restart, a refresh,” Tepper said, according to the Panthers’ site. “We did it last year on the coaching side. Maybe you could say it should have been done before on the GM side. Maybe it should have been. I'm sure people may say that, or otherwise, on both sides.
“I think it's just time, on both sides, to do that. It just seems like the right time to move forward.”
Hurney had made several strong draft picks, like safety and defensive rookie of the year candidate Jeremy Chinn this season, and other standouts like receiver D.J. Moore and pass rusher Brian Burns. But the Panthers are finishing up their third straight losing season.
Given Tepper’s desire to have an organizational shift in philosophy and the lack of wins, Hurney was replaced. A big offseason in Carolina starts a bit early.
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