Panthers fire GM Dave GettlemantheScore — Jack Browne
"After much thought and a long evaluation of our football operations, I have decided to relieve Dave Gettleman of his duties as general manager," Richardson said. "I want to thank Dave for the role he played in our success over the past four seasons. While the timing of this decision is not ideal, a change is needed."
As Richardson admitted, it's a surprising decision at this stage of the offseason, especially considering Gettleman built a roster that went to the Super Bowl in 2015.
The Panthers did severely regress in 2016, finishing the season 6-10, but there were no signs that Gettleman's job was in danger.
He inherited a roster that was hard up against the cap due to poor contract decisions by the previous regime, making the Panthers' run to the Super Bowl even more impressive, though the roster remains worryingly top heavy.
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports Gettleman's deteriorating relationship with Richardson was a factor in the decision, with the issues stemming from Gettleman's handling of the Josh Norman situation last offseason, which ended with the Panthers removing the franchise tag from the cornerback and allowing him to sign with the Washington Redskins in free agency.
The timing of the firing is even worse considering that Carolina's former assistant GM who was the likely in-house favorite to replace Gettleman, Brandon Beane, left to become the Buffalo Bills' GM in May.
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