CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- After sticking around from the birth of the franchise and through three head coaches, longtime Carolina Panthers receivers coach Richard Williamson is giving up the long hours.
"I'm sure I will miss coaching, but I'm looking forward to retirement. After 15 years in Charlotte, this is really home for us."
Williamson played at the University of Alabama, catching passes from Joe Namath, and started his coaching career working under the legendary Bear Bryant. Williamson moved up the ranks and had stints as the head coach at the University of Memphis from 1975 to 1980 and for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1990 and '91.
Williamson spent 13 of his 15 seasons in Carolina as receivers coach. He took over as offensive coordinator in 2000 when Bill Musgrave abruptly quit during the season and held that role again in Seifert's final season as coach one year later.
Smith, Muhammad, Patrick Jeffers, Rocket Ismail and Mark Carrier all had 1,000-yard receiving seasons with the Panthers under Williamson. Smith went from a kick returner as a rookie to one of the game's top receivers.
Williamson becomes the second assistant to leave since the end of Carolina's 8-8 season in 2009. Special teams coach Danny Crossman was fired last week.
Fox is entering the final season of his contract after being denied an extension by Richardson.
Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press