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Panthers DT Derrick Brown: ‘We want Coach Wilks’

Dec 18, 2022; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Panthers head coach Steve Wilks during warm ups at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Carolina Panthers interim coach Steve Wilks has the support of the locker room for the permanent job, defensive tackle Derrick Brown told NFL Network.

“I’ll speak for everybody in that locker room and say that we want coach Wilks to be our next head coach,” Brown said. “That’s for sure.”

Wilks replaced Matt Rhule, who was fired on Oct. 10 after a 1-4 start.

The Panthers have gone 5-5 since and are one game behind the NFC South-leading Tampa Bay Buccaneers with two games remaining.

Team owner David Tepper said earlier this season that Wilks could earn the position if he does an “incredible job.”

Making the playoffs is a reality if Carolina wins on Sunday at Tampa and on Jan. 8 at New Orleans.

Brown said Wilks has already done enough since being elevated from defensive passing game coordinator and secondary coach.

“I think every single week when we come in, he’s gonna tell you exactly how it is. He doesn’t sugarcoat nothing. He keeps it plain Jane, per se,” Brown said. “He lets you know exactly what’s going on. You can be one of the best players, but you walk into that building on Monday and he’ll tell you exactly how he felt about how you played. That level of clarity — that’s exactly what we want.”

Wilks, 53, went 3-13 in one season as head coach of the Arizona Cardinals in 2018.

–Field Level Media