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Matt Rhule admits to ‘less than ideal situation’ for Panthers amid pandemic

Matt Rhule, Panthers

Former Baylor University coach Matt Rhule is entering his first NFL season as head coach of the rapidly different-looking Carolina Panthers, but 2020 is going to be an unorthodox campaign for the first-year coach.

Amid the Panthers’ quarantine due to the ongoing COVID-19 public health crisis, Rhule admitted to the challenge of conducting meetings and getting the team to learn his plays.

Per Steve Reed of the Associated Press:

“This is truly a time for our players where if they have a meeting, whether it is in-person or virtually, they have to be great at it. If they get on the practice field and get a couple of reps they have to be great at them,” the Panthers coach explained. “It’s not ideal, but it is what it is and we’re going to try to make good decisions.”

The Panthers have a brand new coaching staff entering 2020, with Matt Rhule bringing his own coaches into the organization. Rhule and Carolina hired national champion LSU wide receivers coach Joe Brady to be the new offensive coordinator. Brady will team up with Teddy Bridgewater, a rising sixth-year quarterback who signed a three-year, $63 million contract with the team in the offseason.

Bridgewater takes over the Panthers’ offense following a 2019 season that saw the team start Kyle Allen for the most part.

The COVID-19 pandemic has hurt the NFL’s ability for franchises to gauge players and new additions in the offseason. However, training camps began on Tuesday, and with no preseason to be played, teams will have the rest of the month and August to adjust to the new conditions in the coronavirus-laden football landscape.