Panthers' Mike Shula, Ken Dorsey 'relieved of their duties'

Panthers' Mike Shula, Ken Dorsey 'relieved of their duties'

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - The Carolina Panthers announced Tuesday that offensive coordinator Mike Shula and quarterbacks coach Ken Dorsey were "relieved of their duties."

Just before noon, the Carolina Panthers tweeted that Shula and Dorsey were released from the team.

According to the Carolina Panthers, Shula has been with the team for the past seven seasons. He initially started working as a quarterbacks coach for two seasons before becoming the offensive coordinator in 2013, the team stated.

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According to WBTV's partner The Charlotte Observer, Shula faced criticism after the Panthers' 17-3 loss to the Chicago Bears in October. The offense was unable to score a touchdown for the second time this season, and turned the ball over multiple times, two of which were returned for long touchdowns, the Observer reported.

One fan started a GoFundMe aimed at letting the team know just how much they wanted Shula gone, the Observer reported.

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The fundraiser, started by the user "Ogi 'David' Davidovic," wanted to raise $1,700 to fly a banner over Bank of America Stadium and uptown Charlotte for an hour with a message indicating they want Shula fired.

Dorsey has been the quarterbacks coach with the Carolina Panthers for the past five seasons, officials say. A spokesperson with the Carolina Panthers said Dorsey was a "former record-setting quarterback" at the University of Miami.

A spokesperson with the team said the biggest reason why Shula was let go was because the team "needed to make a change." The team released this statement Tuesday afternoon:

"After 2016’s 6-10 finish, Rivera was under internal pressure to make a coordinator change. But staunchly loyal and firmly positive, he believed Shula could navigate personnel tweaks to make the offense thrive like it did in 2015. That evolution never happened as the Panthers struggled to establish an identity this season."

In 2017, the Panthers were 19th in total offense (323.7 yards per game) and 28th in passing (192.3). They were No. 12 in points per game (22.7), according to the Observer.

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