Lions OC Ben Johnson's Remarks Highlight Panthers' Real Problem

The Carolina Panthers have organizational problems that prevent them from acquiring the best talent.

The Carolina Panthers have their new head coach in place with Dave Canales getting the job back in January. Panthers fans have high hopes for the young first-time head coach.

Before the Canales decision was made, however, the Panthers had their eyes on the Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson. After being heavily pursued by Carolina in 2023, Johnson was a candidate once again this time around. In both winters, Johnson decided to stay with the Detroit Lions, where he has been since 2019.

On Friday, Johnson addressed the media during the organized team activities. He discussed the offseason when he was interviewed by the Panthers, among other teams like the Seahawks and the Commanders. His reasoning for staying in Detroit highlights the real issue with the Panthers.

Ben Johnson Explains Why He Turned Down Panthers Job

In his remarks, Johnson emphasizes the importance of stability and sustainability. He says that he wants to go to a situation where he knows he could get a second contract. When asked by a reporter about what he is specifically looking for, it is not surprising to hear him say, "ownership" as one of the first criteria.

That is where Carolina's problems lay. Ever since David Tepper bought the Panthers in 2018, he has worked with seven different head coaches, including Canales. Only Matt Rhule has been able to finish a full season under Tepper so far.

It is difficult to find elite coaches willing to take a job they know they might get fired from in less than a year. Most coaches, like Johnson, want to bring in their own staff, sign players they are comfortable with, and implement things they are comfortable with. That doesn't happen overnight. The Panthers top brass needs to be patient and unless they learn that, they will continue to miss out on talent.

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