Special Teams Coach DeHaven leaves team to receive cancer treatment


SPARTANBURG, SC (WCCB Charlotte) – Panthers special teams coach Bruce DeHaven has left the team and will move into a senior advisor role as he returns to his home in Buffalo, NY to receive cancer treatment.

DeHaven has been battling prostate cancer since the middle of 2015.

Head coach Ron Rivera says DeHaven, who has been with the Panthers since 2013, has epitomized the ‘Keep Pounding’ mantra in his bout with cancer.

“A guy like him deserves the opportunity to still be a part of what we are doing,” Rivera said of the new role DeHaven will have. “Mr. Richardson has been fully supportive. I think that’s outstanding as far as ownership is concerned.”

DeHaven told Rivera about the move after the preseason game at Baltimore. He hopes to return back with the team before the home opener–week two against San Francisco.

Long snapper J.J. Jansen said DeHaven has exuded the same high-energy the entire time he’s been around his special teams coach. Thomas McGaughey will be the special teams coach with assistant Chase Blackburn helping out.

“He’s had the same energy, the same drive and passion that he brought all the years we’ve been together,” Jansen said. “You wouldn’t have noticed a difference in the way he’s conducted his business. Today is tough, and it will continue to be tough, but I’m proud of him.”

In DeHaven’s new role, he will assist in game planning and advance work–according to the Panthers website.

Bruce DeHaven has a long history in the NFL including some heart-breaking moments as special teams coach of the  Buffalo Bills during their Super Bowl runs. Before last year’s playoff run, DeHaven spoke about his experience in the playoffs.