Rivera, who spent nearly nine years with the franchise, expressed his gratitude toward the players and assistants with whom he worked.
"I've been blessed with many future Hall of Famers, as well as many men who took the opportunity in the league as a stepping stone in life," Rivera told reporters, including Steve Reed of The Associated Press. "Being a head coach is more than disseminating a 3-4 or 4-3 defense. Being a head coach is about being a leader of men, in good times and in bad.
"Your trust in me as your head coach has never wavered, and I thank you guys for that. Thank you for trusting me with your careers, with the advice I've given both on and off the field to have a lasting impact on their lives."
The Panthers fired Rivera on Tuesday amidst a four-game losing streak that has dropped the team to 5-7 and likely out of the playoff picture. Despite a difficult end to his tenure in Carolina, the 57-year-old offered little hesitation regarding his next steps in the NFL.
"I've got four weeks off, but my intent is to coach again," Rivera said, according to Joe Person of The Athletic.
"I'm going to be honest with you, I'm kind of excited," he added, referencing potential coaching opportunities.
Rivera said he believes injuries were a major reason for the Panthers' lack of success in 2019.
The coach ended his press conference by holding up two T-shirts and expressing regret for failing to capture a Super Bowl with the team.