The Carolina Panthers recently fired head coach Frank Reich after he started the 2023 season 1-10. How much does the team owe him over the next few years?
Frank Reich’s Salary
According to ESPN, the Indianapolis Colts are paying Reich $9 million per year through 2026 for a total of $36 million after he was fired in December 2022.
Now, after being fired by the Panthers, Reich will continue to earn his pay — with considerably less stress. He will earn a similar sum from the Panthers throughout the next three years.
Panthers owner David Tepper fired Reich as well as quarterback coach Josh McCown and assistant head coach/RB coach Duce Staley.
The firings came less than 24 hours after Carolina’s 17-10 road loss to the Tennessee Titans in Week 12. Special teams coordinator Chris Tabor was named the interim head coach.
Reich’s 11-game tenure is one of the shortest tenures for an NFL head coach (who actually coached a game) in the last 45 years. The last time a team fired a first-year coach (who actually coached a game) this quickly was Pete McCulley, who lasted just nine games for the San Francisco 49ers in 1978.
Reich signed a four-year contract in January to guide the Carolina offense as well as help develop Bryce Young, the No. 1 pick of the 2023 NFL Draft.
Instead, Young has struggled greatly this season. Thus far, he ranks 29th in QBR (32.0) and has been sacked 40 times. He has completed 61.7% of his passes for 1,877 yards, nine touchdowns, and eight interceptions.
Reich is owed $36 million from Carolina through 2026 and will make around $25,000 a day from the Panthers for the next three years.
Shortly after being fired on Monday, Reich told The Charlotte Observer he has no ill will toward Tepper.
“I want to convey that I have nothing but positive thoughts about Mr. Tepper,” Reich said. “On a personal level, I saw a side of him that I deeply respect and care about. But the NFL is a meritocracy. It’s not unconditional love. I understand from a professional standpoint Mr. Tepper is going to have certain standards that he expects to have met.
“I have no hard feelings, and my personal relationship with him was actually a real highlight of this short time.”
As for if he’ll coach again, Reich said, “This is probably the final chapter of my NFL journey.”
Owner David Tepper has now fired his head coach during the season for the second consecutive year. In 2022, the Panthers moved on from Matt Rhule after Week 5.
Throughout the year, the Panthers have been among the worst in the NFL in several categories, particularly offensively. They are averaging 15.7 points per game (29th), 4.1 yards per play (tied for last), and are converting 37.2% of third downs (20th).
“There’s a heart-pounding disappointment in not hitting the marks that we needed to hit to keep this going and try to get it turned around,” Reich said. “It hurts me for the guys, the team, the coaches, and the fans.”
Carolina will endure its sixth straight losing season since Tepper bought the team in 2018 for $2.275 billion. Since then, the Panthers are 30-63, the second-worst record (trailing only the New York Jets).
Reich is the second head coach to be fired this season after the Las Vegas Raiders relieved Josh McDaniels of his duties on Oct. 31.
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