Panthers Request HC Interviews With Ben Johnson, Todd Monken, Bobby Slowik

The list of Panthers head coaching candidates continues to grow. According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, the Panthers have requested an interview with Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson for the HC job. Meanwhile, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports that the Panthers have also requested a HC interview with Ravens offensive coordinator Todd Monken. The Panthers have also requested an interview with Texans offensive coordinator Bobby Slowik (per Pelissero) and Buccaneers offensive coordinator Dave Canales (via ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler).

[RELATED: Panthers Request HC Interview With Bengals OC Brian Callahan]

Johnson is expected to be one of the most popular head coaching candidates this offseason. Since earning a promotion to offensive coordinator in 2022, Johnson has helped guide the Lions to one of the best offenses in the NFL. The Lions ranked top-10 in points in each of the past two campaigns, and after the passing offense took off in 2022, the rushing offense joined them in 2023.

Johnson was already a hot name last offseason, earning interviews with the Panthers, Texans, and Colts. Ultimately, Johnson said the allure of sticking with head coach Dan Campbell and quarterback Jared Goff convinced him to stay in Detroit. Following another successful regular season, it’ll be interesting to see how the offensive coordinator proceeds in 2024, especially if David Tepper is willing to back up the Brink’s truck.

Following underwhelming OC stops in Tampa Bay and Cleveland, Monken caught on with Georgia in 2020. He returned to the NFL in 2023, this time as Baltimore’s offensive coordinator. Monken was credited with helping guide the Ravens to one of the best offenses in the NFL this past season. In 2023, Baltimore ranked first in points scored, first in takeaway/giveaway ratio, and fourth in yards. Despite injuries throughout the depth chart, the Ravens’ rushing attack continued to be the most productive in the NFL, ranking first in yards, third in yards per attempt, and fourth in touchdowns.

After interviewing for the Jets and Packers head coaching jobs in 2019, Monken had been off the head coaching radar over the past few years. He’s quickly rehabilitated his image; besides his interview with the Panthers, Monken has also earned an interview from the Chargers.

Slowik’s stint with the 49ers culminated in him earning offensive passing game coordinator in 2022, and his success in that role earned him the OC job in Houston for the 2023 campaign. Despite rostering one of the least-experienced offenses in the NFL, Slowik squeezed a productive season out of his group, helping guide the Texans to the 12th-best mark in both points and yards.

Canales spent more than a decade in Seattle before earning the Buccaneers offensive coordinator job last offseason. There were plenty of question marks surrounding Tampa Bay’s offense heading into 2023, but Canales got a productive season out of his squad. Baker Mayfield had one of the best seasons of his career under center, and the Buccaneers ended up finishing top-10 in passing touchdowns and interceptions.

We already heard that the Panthers requested a HC interview with Bengals OC Brian Callahan, meaning the five definitive candidates all have offensive backgrounds. Recent reports indicated that Tepper was eyeing more of an offensive-minded coach, although that hasn’t stopped the organization from being connected to (and potentially pursuing) the defensive-minded Bill Belichick.

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