Should Carolina Panthers Head Coach Ron Rivera Be on the Hot Seat Heading Into 2013?

(John David Mercer/USA Today Sports)

After finishing his first season in 2011 with a 6-10 record, expectations were high for Ron Rivera and the Carolina Panthers heading into 2012–especially since Cam Newton had a year of experience under his belt. Many expected the Panthers to at least make a run at the playoffs this season, but a disappointing start led this team to a 7-9 finish for the 2012 season.

With expectations even higher heading into 2013, is it safe to say Rivera deserves to be on the hot seat next season?

The 7-9 finish shouldn’t fool anyone considering Carolina ended the year on a four-game winning streak and there were certain times when this team looked flat-out awful–which means the Panthers will have a busy off-season when it comes to filling in the areas in need of improvement. This team has plenty to build around with a quarterback like Newton and if he can receive a few more weapons, it would take the pressure off of him heading into his third season.

When Rivera came on board for the 2011 season, he was the type of head coach that seemed overdue for the position and there was plenty of excitement now that he finally was receiving the opportunity. Now, it’s time for Rivera to prove himself as a head coach heading into his third season now that he’s received plenty of experience over his first two seasons.

If he fails to get the Panthers off to a solid start, that hot seat could heat up pretty quickly.

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