Tuesday’s press conference involving Panthers owner David Tepper included a specific question about whether former head coach Frank Reich wanted to take CJ Stroud with the first overall pick in the 2023 draft, and whether Tepper had advanced criteria in favor of Bryce Young.
Tepper began his response by shedding light on group decision-making in general.
“The way our processes go here, I’ll answer this very clearly,” Tepper said. “Of all those results, was it [hiring] Head coach, was it [drafting] Bryce, I won’t vote on those decisions until the end, okay? So those decisions are made. . . Football people.
“Now look, everything right and wrong here is ultimately my fault, right? I have the final say. But as far as those decisions, whether it was Frank Reich or whether it was Price Young, those decisions were made, and in Price’s case it was almost – I believe it was a unanimous decision, and the coaches and scouts had very strong opinions. time.”
Tepper ultimately gave a very specific answer about choosing Young over Stroud, who became a real candidate for not only Offensive Rookie of the Year, but also League MVP.
“To answer your questions, this is not the way the process was done,” Tepper said. “How the process was done. Again, even though there was a process with five people in the room, the way the votes came in, Frank was the first choice. [as head coach], I can always veto that choice. And Price too [as the first overall pick] In this particular case the vote was unanimous, so I could have vetoed that choice.
“In both cases, I supported both picks, okay? I’ll just say I supported both picks. I supported the coaches, I supported the scouts, their consensus, I supported Frank Reich. So whether it’s good, bad or indifferent, because the buck ultimately stops here, I take full responsibility for everything, but that’s the way the process works.
The most telling aspect of the response was Tepper’s claim that the preference for Bryce Young over CJ Stroud was “unanimous” among all coaches and all scouts. How can every person legitimately and genuinely want Young to Strode — especially when there is genuine hope in some football circles that Young will fall below the NFL’s “must be this tall to play quarterback” mark? How could someone who thinks like that not work for the Panthers?
A question like this, which should have at least a minority view when more than two or three people are involved, becomes unanimous when those who want to pick Stroud realize that it is a losing argument. To accompany is to accompany.
It’s like a jury, and Tepper is not only the presiding officer, but also the dictator. He goes on to say. No matter what, this is the verdict.
Tepper said he would not vote until the end. He also said he has the right to veto any decision, even if it goes against the consensus below him. That tells us all we need to know about how things really work in Carolina.
Tepper is essentially a general manager. Ultimately what he says goes, so the challenge for coaches and the front-office staff is to steer clear of the direction the wind is blowing from his words and actions, to avoid a situation where everyone goes one way — Tepper goes another. .
This goes to the given example Players How do owners intervene without directly interfering? They do not issue decrees. They say what they like, and/or don’t like.
If there is Twix in the candy bowl in the living room, the owner has never had Twix, and the owner has never tried Twix and said out loud to someone, “This is the best candy I’ve ever had. I prefer this to all other candy,” and soon Twix will be falling out of every cabinet, drawer and shelf. Even though the owner didn’t ask anyone to do it.
Tepper takes it a step further. He acknowledges that he has the right to intervene directly. He can veto any decision made by the football staff. So the challenge for football staff is always to figure out what Tepper wants in order to avoid a situation where they make a recommendation that he rejects.
After all, if Tepper’s employees make suggestions that he rejects, he will eventually ask why he hires people who don’t see things his way.
That’s why it was unanimous in my opinion. They all know who Tepper likes. They all knew what their ballots should be before the time came to vote and give them to the one person who had the right to count them – and then throw them all out if he chose.