Carolina Panthers coach Ron Rivera was linked to the Los Angeles Rams’ coaching vacancy Saturday, but Rivera’s agent says there’s been no contact between Rivera and the Rams.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport called Rivera a “name to watch” in LA, citing the NFL’s lone Latino coach could be a good fit in a southern California region with a large Hispanic population.
Frank Bauer, Rivera’s longtime agent, shot down the idea that Rivera would leave Carolina for L.A.
“There hasn’t been any contact,” Bauer told the Observer. “Ron’s super happy where he’s at.”
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That doesn’t mean the Rams couldn’t reach out to Rivera – or vice versa – after the season. Pro Football Talk reported recently the Rams have not ruled out the possibility of hiring a head coach under contract with another team, a scenario that would require the clubs to work out compensation.
But Bauer pointed to Rivera’s strong coaching staff in Carolina and the fact the Panthers are one year from the franchise’s second Super Bowl appearance as reasons Rivera would be hard pressed to leave Carolina.
“It’s news to me,” Bauer said of the report connecting Rivera to the Rams.
Rivera received a three-year, $19.5 million contract extension during the offseason after guiding the Panthers to a 15-1 regular season and Super Bowl run. Rivera, who grew up in northern California and played at Cal, is under contract through the 2018 season.
The Rams moved quickly in firing Jeff Fisher following a 42-14 loss to Atlanta in Week 14.
Several big-name candidates have been mentioned, beginning with Jon Gruden. The NFL Network also reported Saturday that New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton is monitoring the Rams’ vacancy “with sincere interest.”