Former Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule has taken legal action over a compensation dispute, a report from The Associated Press revealed.
The arbitration suit with the NFL is seeking around $5 million in “offset severance compensation,” a source told the AP. CBS Sports was first to report the suit.
Rhule was relieved of his duties in October, one day after the Panthers were defeated by the 49ers to drop to 1-4.
The current Nebraska football head coach has reportedly retained the services of high-profile litigator John Singer of Singer Deutsch LLP to handle the lawsuit.
A spokesperson for the Panthers did not provide a comment about the situation.
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Rhule spent less than three years with Carolina despite signing a seven-year, $62 million contract. At the time of his firing, it was believed that Rhule was owed approximately $34 million.
Several weeks after his departure, Rhule returned to the college football ranks and accepted the head coaching job at Nebraska. The program offered the 45-year-old coach an eight-year, $72 million contract, NFL insider Ian Rapoport previously reported.
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The contact was believed to possibly offset what Panther’s owner David Tepper would be responsible for paying him. However, the arbitration suit alleges the Panthers still owe him about $5 million because of how the contract with Carolina was structured.
Earlier this week, the Panthers announced Rhule’s successor, Frank Reich. Carolina formally introduced Reich at a news conference Tuesday.
Tepper acknowledged he made a “mistake” hiring Rhule, whom he described as a “CEO-type head coach.” Tepper added that it is “preferable to have a coach that is really extraordinary on one side of the ball or the other side of the ball.”
“Listen, I’ll self-admit, we could have run a better process last time,” Tepper said. “And I am learning. … With all humility, I could have done better, OK? I’m not saying that Rhule wasn’t a good coach. I’m not saying that. Please don’t interpret it that way. I’m saying I could have run a better process last time. I do believe that. I think this time we were very thorough. I was in every single interview.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Source: Fox News