Ron Rivera will take over defensive playcalling for the Carolina Panthers following their firing of defensive line coach Brady Hoke and assistant secondary coach Jeff Imamura.

Rivera took over the playcalling for the defense on Sunday, but he did not fire first-year defensive coordinator Eric Washington, who now will oversee the defensive front seven.

"Eric is a professional,'' he said. "He's done this for a long time. His track record speaks for itself, especially dealing with the front seven, especially the front four.

"I have a bit of experience at playcalling and putting defenses together. It's an opportunity for me to work even closer with him to help him out as we go forward. Y'all got to remember your first time doing something. You weren't perfect and somebody had to help you. That's really what I'm here for.''