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Panthers choose Bucs OC Dave Canales as new coach

By Jared Smola | Updated on Thu, 25 Jan 2024, 1:32 PM EST
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The Panthers are making a surprise choice in hiring former Buccaneers OC Dave Canales as HC, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Canales arrives after spending just one year with the Bucs. But that season seems to have revived QB Baker Mayfield's career. Overall, the Bucs ranked just 20th in points, 23rd in total yards, tied for 19th in yards per play, and 20th in offensive DVOA. Before that, Canales spent 13 years coaching offense in Seattle, including three years as WRs coach, five as QBs coach, and two as passing-game coordinator. Canales drew praise for his role in QB Geno Smith's 2022 breakout. His work with Smith and Mayfield almost certainly excited the Panthers, who likely envision Canales as the guy to help QB Bryce Young rebound from a troubling rookie season. Of course, Canales goes from QBs coach for Smith and OC for Mayfield to HC in Carolina. So be careful about assuming too much from his influence. We'll see who Canales brings in to fill out his coaching staff and what the Panthers can add to an offense that sported unimpressive talent in 2023 (and doesn't have a 2024 first-round pick). This seems like a positive move for Young's dynasty outlook, but temper your excitement.

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Jared Smola, Lead Analyst
Jared has been with Draft Sharks since 2007. He’s now Lead Analyst, heading up the preseason and weekly projections that fuel your Draft War Room and My Team tools. He currently ranks 1st among 133 analysts in draft rankings accuracy.
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