The Carolina Panthers fired head coach Ron Rivera on Tuesday amid a four-game losing streak that has essentially removed them from the playoff race.
Secondary coach Perry Fewell was named interim head coach. Offensive coordinator Norv Turner will become a special assistant to the head coach, while quarterbacks coach Scott Turner was bumped up to offensive coordinator.
"I believe this is the best decision for the long-term success of our team," Panthers owner David Tepper said in a release. "I have a great deal of respect for Ron and the contributions he has made to this franchise and to this community. I wish him the best. I will immediately begin the search for the next head coach of the Carolina Panthers."
Rivera was four games away from completing his ninth season with Carolina. He was Coach of the Year in 2013 and 2015 and led the Panthers to an appearance in Super Bowl 50.
The Panthers have been in decline lately, though, and are likely to miss the postseason for the third time in the last four years. Rivera was dealt a tough hand in 2019 as quarterback Cam Newton went down after Week 2 and ultimately landed on injured reserve.
Speculation suggested the 57-year-old affectionately known as "Riverboat Ron" was on borrowed time in Carolina because of his resistance to analytics. Tepper, who purchased the franchise in 2018, is a staunch supporter of analytics.
"We are going to take a comprehensive and thorough review of our football operation to make sure we are structured for long-term sustained success," Tepper said. "Our vision is to find the right mix of old-school discipline and toughness with modern and innovative processes. We will consider a wide range of football executives to complement our current football staff. One change that we will implement is hiring an assistant general manager and vice president of football operations. We all must recognize that this is the first step in a process, but we are committed to building and maintaining a championship culture for our team and our fans."
Rivera leaves the Panthers with a 76-63-1 career record. Carolina takes a 5-7 record into its Week 14 meeting with the Atlanta Falcons.