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Ron Rivera, Carolina Panthers owner to talk Saturday

While seven NFL teams move rapidly to fill their head-coaching vacancies, Ron Rivera and the Carolina Panthers remain in limbo. It looks like we'll finally have some progress over the weekend.

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Rivera and Panthers owner Jerry Richardson will sit down Saturday, according to Joseph Person of the Charlotte Observer. The Panthers then are expected to meet with general manager candidates.

New York Giants director of college scouting Marc Ross and senior pro personnel analyst Dave Gettleman are both expected to interview for the Panthers' GM job. It's very possible we won't know Rivera's future until the Panthers hire a GM.

Person's best guess is that Rivera will stick around with a first-time GM. In that scenario, Rivera likely would need a playoff appearance to stick around for another season. It's the same situation Lovie Smith faced in Chicago this season.

It's a difficult situation for any coach and GM. So many firings happened this week because the front office and the coach were not on the same page. The Panthers might be better off starting totally anew rather than saddling a new GM with a coach they aren't truly comfortable with.

Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.

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