Patriots Rumors: Jerod Mayo Requested for Panthers HC Interview amid Browns Links

Adam WellsJanuary 12, 2023

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - DECEMBER 18:  Linebackers coach Jerod Mayo of the New England Patriots looks on during warmups before a game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium on December 18, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Getty Images)
Chris Unger/Getty Images

After finishing his fourth season on the New England Patriots coaching staff, Jerod Mayo is reportedly lining up interviews.

Per ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Carolina Panthers are requesting permission to interview Mayo for their vacant head-coaching position.

Schefter reported Monday the Cleveland Browns have requested to speak with Mayo about their opening at defensive coordinator.

The Browns fired Joe Woods, who had been defensive coordinator for three seasons, on Sunday after they finished 20th in points allowed and 25th in run defense.

Carolina has interviewed or will interview Steve Wilks, Frank Reich and Jim Caldwell.

Mayo, Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey, Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen, Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson and New York Giants offensive coordinator Mike Kafka have also received interview requests from the Panthers.

Wilks went 6-6 in 12 games with the Panthers as interim head coach after they fired Matt Rhule on Oct. 10.

ESPN's David Newton noted Carolina's front office is focused on coaches with an offensive background to help the organization address its issues at quarterback.

Sam Darnold finished this season as the team's starting quarterback, but he will become a free agent. Baker Mayfield and PJ Walker also started games for the Panthers in 2022.

Wilks and Mayo are the only candidates who have a defensive background. The 36-year-old Mayo played linebacker for the Patriots from 2008 to 2015. He returned to New England in 2019 when Bill Belichick hired him as the inside linebackers coach.

The Panthers' strong finish suggests reasons to be optimistic for the future. They won five of their last eight games after a 2-7 start and finished second in the NFC South.

Carolina is projected to have four of the top 100 picks in the 2023 NFL draft, including the ninth overall choice.