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Panthers agree to terms with Dom Capers, Josh McCown

Dom Capers

CHARLOTTE — He's back.

After hiring their first quarterback as their new head coach, the Panthers are also bringing back their first head coach.

The team has agreed to terms with Dom Capers to return as senior defensive assistant, the same role he had last year in Denver with defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero.

They also agreed to terms with Josh McCown to be the new quarterbacks coach.

Josh McCown

The 72-year-old Capers was the first coach in team history, chosen to lead the expansion franchise in 1995.

After that team lost its first five games, they finished the first season by winning seven of the last 11, springboarding them to the improbable NFC West title the following year.

Capers won NFL coach of the year honors in 1996 for leading the Panthers to a 12-4 record and the NFC Championship Game in just their second season. He has also served as head coach for the expansion Houston Texans, along with a long track record of strong work as an assistant.

He won a Super Bowl ring as defensive coordinator with the Packers, and has also been coordinator for the Dolphins, Jaguars and Steelers. Including his time in the USFL with the Philadelphia Stars (where he first met future Panthers cornerstone and Hall of Famer Sam Mills), he has 37 years of experience in pro football.

The last four season, he's worked as a senior advisor, with stints in Jacksonville, Minnesota, Detroit, and Denver. Working alongside Evero last year, the Broncos had a top-10 defense despite trading away their star pass-rusher and dealing with a number of injuries.

Ejiro Evero, Dom Capers

"I hold him in high regard — for his humility, his intelligence, and his work ethic," Capers said of Evero this week. "He has all the qualities you're looking for in a coach."

The Panthers have also added linebackers coach Peter Hansen (who was also in Denver last year) to Evero's staff.

The 43-year-old McCown was here as a backup quarterback in 2008 and 2009, and has served as a high school coach in the area while living here after his playing days.

He was sought after as an assistant coach, and interviewed for the Texans head coaching vacancy last year.

He spent 16 years in the NFL as a quarterback, appearing in three games with the Panthers in two seasons.