Updated Jan 25, 2024 - Sports

Carolina Panthers hire Dave Canales as head coach

Dave Canales (left). Photo: David Berding/Getty Images

Photo: Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

There's a new head coach again on Mint Street.

Driving the news: The Carolina Panthers named Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator Dave Canales as their new head coach Thursday night.

Why it matters: Canales is known for resurrecting quarterbacks, as The Athletic reported. Now it's time to see if he can bring an entire organization back to life.

  • The hope is he can help last year's No. 1 overall pick, quarterback Bryce Young, succeed in Carolina after a rocky rookie season, when the team went 2-15.

The big picture: Canales, 42, is latest hire hoping to lead the team to a winning season or the playoffs, which the team hasn't reached since 2017.

  • Plus, if Canales is successful, he'll bring stability to a role that's seen plenty of turnover since David Tepper bought the team.

Catch up quick: The Panthers have had six head coaches, three of them interim, since 2018. First-year head coach Frank Reich was fired after 11 games last season.

  • On Monday, the team promoted Dan Morgan, a former Panthers linebacker, to president of football operations/general manager. He'll focus on personnel.
  • Canales and Morgan worked together in Seattle from 2010-17, ESPN reported.

Details: Canales, a first-season offensive coordinator with the Bucs, worked with quarterback Baker Mayfield, and helped lead the team to the playoffs. Mayfield had an unsuccessful stint in Carolina in 2022, but he's thriving in Tampa Bay.

  • Canales spent 13 seasons with the Seahawks, going to the playoffs 10 times, winning two conference championships and a Super Bowl in various coaching roles.

What they're saying: "We are impressed with (Dave's) ability to bring out the best in players," Tepper said in a statement.

Of note: Canales will be the Panthers second Hispanic head coach, joining former head coach Ron Rivera on that list.

Editor's note: This story was has been updated to reflect that the team officially announced Canales, as well as to include a statement from David Tepper.


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