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Panthers expected to hire Seahawks director Scott Fitterer as general manager

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After a long search, David Tepper, owner of Carolina Panthers, has finally hired his first major front office.

Carolina is expected to hire Seattle Seahawk’s VP of football operations Scott Fitterer as new general manager, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero reported Thursday, according to sources. The team later confirmed that they had offered the role to Fitterer.

Fitterer was one of 15 candidates for an interview for the position of Carolina general manager, who had been vacant since December 21 when the Panthers fired veteran GM Marty Hurney, and one of four finalists, along with Monti Ossenfort of Tennessee, Adam Peters in San Francisco and Ryan Poles in Kansas City. . Fitterer, a late addition to Carolina’s interview process, made a quick and positive impression on Tepper and Co., Rapoport reported.

There is still work to be done on the details of Fitterer’s deal, but the old Seattle sergeant is headed east.

Fitterer has not interviewed other teams this recruiting cycle, although his name has been listed as a suitable GM candidate in recent years. The new Panthers GM had been in Seattle since 2001 and had partnered with the respected GM John Schneider since 2010. Schneider, who signed an extension this week with the 2027 design, isn’t going anywhere. The same cannot be said for Fitterer.

In Carolina, Fitterer will be paired with a sophomore coach in Matt Rhule, who had an arranged collaboration with Hurney in 2020. will be eighth in the upcoming 2021 draft.

Chief among the Panthers’ needs, and therefore above Fitterer’s priorities, is finding a franchise quarterback. Carolina replaced former MVP Cam Newton with Teddy Bridgewater and PJ Walker in 2020. With Bridgewater not necessarily the bottom-center answer, the Panthers are expected to find their QB of the future in design or in the spare time this low season. Carolina must also try to improve her mediocre defense and strengthen her attack line and weapons.

From a broader perspective, Fitterer is expected to be a culture builder alongside the energetic Rhule, who has a long line in Carolina, thanks to a seven-year deal signed last season and running through the 2026 season. future tied at the hip, Tepper probably hopes for at least half a decade.

When he fired Hurney just before Christmas, Tepper said he wanted “a reboot, a freshening up” at the CEO and an organizational structure and a relationship between coach and GM that wasn’t, in his words, “stupid.”

In Fitterer, Tepper has rebooted. Time will tell about his final claim.

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