Carolina Panthers Hire Frank Reich to be Head Coach: Next up is QB Decision

The Carolina Panthers have hired former Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich as the franchise’s next head coach. Reich was with the Colts for four and a half seasons before being fired midway through the 2022-23 season. Reich has a 40-33-1 regular season record and a 1-2 playoff record.

The Frank Reich Resume

Frank Reich has a long NFL history as a coach and a player. Here are a few of his noteworthy accomplishments and career details:

  • 13-year career as an NFL quarterback.
    • Spent the majority of his career in Buffalo as Jim Kelly’s backup.
    • Threw for 6,075 yards and 40 touchdowns.
    • Retired after the 1998 season.
  • Started coaching in 2006.
    • 2006-2007: Indianapolis Colts Intern
    • 2008-2011: Indianapolis Colts Offensive Assistant.
    • 2012: Arizona Cardinals Wide Receivers Coach
    • 2013: San Diego Chargers Quarterbacks Coach
    • 2014-2015: San Diego Chargers Offensive Coordinator
    • 2016-2017: Philadelphia Eagles Offensive Coordinator
      • Won the 2018 Super Bowl
    • 2018-2022: Indianapolis Colts Head Coach
  • Has worked for some incredible coaches, including Jim Caldwell, Tony Dungy, and Doug Pedersen.

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Reich’s Teams Against the Spread

Many Panthers fans and North Carolina bettors alike are probably curious to know how Frank Reich teams do from a sports betting perspective. To do that, we are going to go back to the middle three seasons Reich was a head coach for the Colts and key you some key betting facts:

2019 Season

  • The Colts were 7-9 straight up.
  • 7-7-2 against the spread
  • 3-3-2 ATS as underdogs
  • 4-4 ATS as favorites

2020 Season

  • The Colts were 11-5 straight up.
  • 9-7 ATS
  • 0-1 ATS as underdogs
  • 9-6 ATS as favorites

2021 Season

  • The Colts were 9-8 straight up.
  • 10-7 ATS
  • 6-3 ATS as underdogs
  • 4-4 ATS as favorites

Overall, Reich has been solid as a head coach for sports bettors. Taking out his first and last seasons as the head coach of the Colts helps us get a more accurate representation of his teams. When he was established and had his teams rolling, they were among the top half of the league in record and betting-wise.

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Why Reich and the Colts Failed

The biggest thing that can plague head coaches is when there is not an established quarterback leading the team. Reich’s biggest problem during his time in Indianapolis is that not once did Reich have a multi-year starting quarterback. In fact, during his 4.5-season tenure, he had seven starting quarterbacks. 

When Reich took the Indianapolis job, Andrew Luck was supposed to be his quarterback long-term. Well, Luck retired, and the Colts trotted out Jacoby Brissett, Brian Hoyer, retirement home Phillip Rivers, washed-up Carson Wentz, washed-up Matt Ryan, and Sam Ehlinger.

It is actually impressive to see how well Reich managed to do in Indianapolis without a top-15 quarterback in any single season as the head coach. Finding a way to get his teams to the playoffs multiple times and being viewed as a top-ten team, even coming into his last season with the Colts. Reich was also the offensive coordinator in Philadelphia when he helped guide Nick Foles and the Eagles to a Super Bowl. 

The Panthers Outlook with Reich as Head Coach

The Panthers’ top priority, with Reich as head coach, has to be finding a franchise quarterback. How does Carolina do that? Well, there are multiple options, but what is the best route? Does Carolina draft a rookie, make a trade for an established quarterback, or sign a free agent? There are many routes, but finding a solid rookie quarterback and letting Reich develop them should be the top priority.

Reich has done some pretty incredible things with some mediocre quarterbacks. It would be intriguing to see how he could develop a rookie with a high ceiling. If the Panthers do not find a long-term franchise quarterback, will Reich’s tenure be any better than it was with Indianapolis? Likely not. Head coaches and quarterbacks are often tied at the hip, which will be the case in Carolina. The Panthers just have to find their quarterback first. 

AP Photo/Zach Bolinger

About the Author

Amber Hoffman

Amber Hoffman is a former Managing Editor of A recovering attorney, she's spent almost a decade developing and managing websites and writing for a variety of industries. Amber married into a Red Sox family and has embraced the Sox ever since.