CHARLOTTE, NC — No chicken wing giveaways at dd Peckers Wing Shack on Tuesday.
Carolina Panthers coach Matt Rhule was not fired after Sunday’s loss to the New York Giants.
But restaurant owner Justin Holland would have happily passed on his social media offer of free wings (which likely cost him more than $10,000) if Ruhl had been fired by Monday’s 5 p.m.
@Leopards If Matt Rhule gets fired by 5pm tomorrow, free wings on Tuesday. Limit 10 per customer, use code FireRhule
— dd Peckers (@ddPeckers_CLT) September 18, 2022
It’s a case in point as the Panthers extend the NFL’s longest hitting streak to 0-2 heading into Sunday’s home game. New Orleans Saints (1 p.m. ET, Fox)
Holland blamed the rule for a 10-25 record and 4-13 domestically since taking over as head coach in 2020, though a turnaround from owner David Tepper is imminent.
“I got hacked,” Holland said after Sunday’s 19-16 loss to the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. “I’ve had enough.”
Former Saints coach Jim Mora understands the frustration.
He took over a New Orleans team in 1986 that was the most ineffective in the NFL with 19 straight winless seasons.
New Orleans radio personality Buddy Dilberto arrived in their 1-15 1980 season for six seasons, first wearing a brown paper bag over his head with the word “Aints” emblazoned on the front.
Saints fans soon followed suit, and the craze spread to other markets and other sports with perennial losers.
“They were so hungry for a winner,” recalled Mora, who delivered a winning streak in just his second season.
Fans aren’t putting bags over their heads in Charlotte, but frustration is growing from longtime supporters like the 50-year-old Holland.
They worry that Carolina has become a laughing stock.
“I try to support them,” Holland said. “Every Sunday I hang up my flag, but it’s getting old to fail.”
The Panthers were winless at home against New Orleans last September. 19. Such lines are often dismissed by coaches.
According to ELIAS, Carolina is the 12th team in the last 10 seasons to go an entire year without a win at home. Among others — Atlanta Falcons, Cleveland Browns (twice), Dallas Cowboys, Detroit Lions (twice), Jacksonville Jaguars, New York Jets, Las Vegas Raiders, San Francisco 49ers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tennessee Titans and Washington DC Dallas and Cleveland They have had at least four different coaches in the interval.
Only the Giants (21-46), Lions (18-47-2), Jets (18-49) and Jaguars (16-51) have a worse record than Carolina since 2018.
So the Panthers, who haven’t had a win since 2017, appear to be on a permanent losing streak.
Rule declined to accept a $62 million contract in the third year of a seven-year contract.
“Any idea that there’s a loser’s mentality in this building is false,” he said. “Because if you’re in this building, you have to win.”
It doesn’t make sense that the Panthers players, who are among the other perennial losers, have reached the point where Carolina is listed with those other teams. Former New York Jets wide receiver Robbie Anderson said the rule was not to blame for the slide.
“I play this game for Coach Rule,” said Anderson, who returns to Temple for its third season with Rule. “He gets a lot of blame. It’s not him. To me, he’s telling us what we need to do as a team knowing what we know.
Panthers players and coaches believe they are close to turning things around and getting fans.
“Honestly, it doesn’t bother me. I’ve dealt with boos in the past,” quarterback Baker Mayfield said. “We like our fan base to give us energy. When it comes, if we implement it, they will be awesome for us.
While Rhule didn’t get the Panthers to snap their losing streak, both losses this season were close games, with punts of 58 and 56 yards in the fourth quarter, the first in NFL history in back-to-back weeks.
“I want to make sure we’re close [to winning],” Rule said Sunday. “I believe that with all my heart.”
Rule explained on Wednesday that he said “shut down” because “as a head coach you’re responsible for the guys and their mentality and psyche,” not an excuse.
“Make no mistake, when we walk in here on Monday, we’re going to say, ‘Hey, it’s okay, guys,'” Rule added. … It’s a tough place. It’s a frustrating place.
“But at the same time, we’re like, ‘Here we are.’ You have to fight to get out of it.”
Mora understands, but he will advise Rule not to use the word “close” in public. His 49ers speech summed up what he was close to.
“We’re close, close s—” he said“You can put it on TV for me.”
Cornerback Donte Jackson said players need to be smart and look past the “narratives” of fans.
“Nothing they say or do is going to affect us here,” he said.
Safety Justin Burris has played for the Jets and Browns, and so far he hasn’t felt the losing culture he experienced with those teams.
“With maturity, you learn to block out outside noise,” he said. “Once we start winning again, those people will come back.”
“People want to blame somebody for things,” he said. ,[Rhule’s] At the top of the chart. That is what comes to his position and work. Knowing what we know, he does what he has to do.
“… From our perspective, we’re right there.
Holland believes. He wants to hope to return to winning ways like in 2015, when the Panthers had an NFL-best 15-1 regular-season record and reached the Super Bowl.
But he was so frustrated on Sunday that his emotions took to Twitter and Facebook.
“To me, it seemed like they needed a change, so I put in my two cents,” he said.
A site with 926 followers got 5,877 likes and 280 comments on Twitter alone.
Holland can’t imagine what fans will say if Carolina loses Sunday, tying the Panthers’ 10-game losing streak in 2019-20 and five of 15 straight to end the 2001 season.
“I usually get four options,” Holland said. “So trust me, I’m not alone.”