Panthers extend head coach Ron Rivera through 2017 season

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Carolina head coach Ron Rivera led the team to a No. 2 seed in the NFC. (Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Carolina head coach Ron Rivera led the team to a No. 2 seed in the NFC before losing to the 49ers. (Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The Carolina Panthers extended head coach Ron Rivera's contract on Tuesday to keep him in Charlotte through the 2017 NFL season.

The 52-year-old said he likes living in Charlotte and working for the Panthers organization, according to Max Henson of

"I have been very clear about how much I have enjoyed living in Charlotte and working for this organization. I very much appreciate the support and confidence Mr. Richardson and (general manager) Dave Gettleman have shown in me and our staff. Any success we have enjoyed is the result of a team effort by players, coaches, scouts and the entire organization, and our ultimate goal remains winning the Super Bowl."

This past season, his third at the helm in North Carolina, Rivera led the franchise to 12 wins en route to the NFC South division title. This season also marked the first time the team made the playoffs since 2008. The Panthers got off to a 1-3 start before reeling off 11 victories in their next 12 games during the regular season.

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The run marked a franchise record eight-game winning streak, and the Panthers locked up the No. 2 seed in the NFC and a first-round bye before losing at home to the San Francisco 49ers.

Panthers general manager Dan Gettleman showed his support of Rivera, saying Tuesday that the team is excited to continue in the success shown by the head coach in previous seasons, according to the report:

"The team has shown improvement under Ron each year, and he is deserving of the recognition that he has received for the 2013 season. We are pleased and excited with the continuity this extension brings."

The Panthers' record has improved each year that Rivera has been their head coach. They finished 6-10 in 2011, 7-9 in 2012 and 12-4 in 2013. Rivera received Coach of the Year honors in 2013 from the Professional Football Writers of America.

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