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Ron Rivera Named NFL Coach of the Year

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Ron Rivera has been named NFL Coach of the Year after guiding the Panthers to an appearance in Super Bowl 50.

Under Rivera, who also won Coach of the Year following the 2013 season, the Panthers became just the seventh team in the Super Bowl era to go 15-1 or better in the regular season.

"It's a tremendous award for the organization. It validates everything that we've done," Rivera said. "And again, our success always starts at the top. I really do appreciate our owner, Mr. (Jerry) Richardson, for believing in me and giving me my opportunity. Dave Gettleman and Marty Hurney – the two general managers I've worked with – I thank them for what they've done. Our coaching staff has been tremendous; our players have been outstanding.

"But I want to dedicate this to my brother Mickey, who recently passed of pancreatic cancer."

Prior to Rivera's arrival in 2011, the Panthers had never gone to the playoffs in consecutive years and no team had ever won the NFC South division twice in a row. Carolina earned its third consecutive NFC South title in 2015 and claimed the top seed in the conference for the first time in franchise history.

The Panthers started 14-0 this season, which, combined with four victories to close the 2014 regular season, gave Carolina an NFC-record 18-game winning streak.

Rivera's commitment to running the ball and playing stout defense has led to success. The Panthers have produced 27 consecutive regular season games with at least 100 rushing yards, the longest active streak in the NFL. Carolina's defense has finished in the top 10 for four straight years.

View the top photos from the head coach's season.

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