"It's disappointing, but I knew it when I went in for the interview," Skipper told the newspaper. "The only reason they did it was because the players spoke up for me. It's a good group of guys, and I appreciate them trying."
"They both (Rivera and Chudzinski) told me they knew the players liked me, and that meant something. But then they kept talking about going through the process, and I knew I wasn't getting the job," Skipper said, adding that they spent most of the meeting "picking my brain" about personnel.
Skipper guided a Panthers rushing attack that ranked 13th in the NFL in 2010 with 115.4 yards per game, even as the young team struggled mightily on offense. In 2009, the Panthers ranked third in the league with 156.1 rushing yards per game, as backs Williams (1,117) and Stewart (1,133) both surpassed 1,000 yards. Carolina also ranked third in 2008 (152.3 rushing yards per game) and 14th in 2007 (114.0 yards per game).
"I'd have stuck around and coached a few more," Skipper told The Observer. "I appreciate John trying, but he was creating a spot for me. I'm either retiring or just waiting to see what happens next year at this stage."
Washington becomes the fourth member of Carolina's defensive staff, joining coordinator Sean McDermott, secondary coach Ron Meeks and defensive quality control and assistant defensive line coach Sam Mills III.