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January 11, 2009

Peppers doesn't want to "cripple" Panthers, self

While not stating whether or not he wants to remain with the Panthers, Pro Bowl defensive end Julius Peppers said today he didn't want his impending free agency situation to leave himself or the team "crippled."

"Ideally, I want to be in the best situation possible for myself and for this organization," Peppers said Sunday after the team's had its farewell meeting following Saturday night's 33-13 playoff loss to Arizona. "I’m thankful for everything they’ve done for me.

"I don’t want to leave them crippled or in a bad situation and I don’t want to do that to myself either. Whatever works out best for both sides is what I’m comfortable with."

Peppers' contract is due to expire soon, which would make him an unrestricted free agent unless the Panthers sign him to an extension or put their franchise tag on him.

If Carolina franchises him -- which appears almost certain if a deal doesn't get done -- they would have to make him a one-year tender offer of around $17 million. The Panthers also could franchise him and then trade him to another team.

Coach John Fox said he had held private discussions with Peppers about the matter, but wouldn't say what he knows about Peppers' preferences.

"I think those things are between me and Julius," said Fox.

For the second straight day, Peppers carefully avoided directly answering questions about whether he wants to stay with the Panthers.

-- Charles Chandler

Posted by Observer Sports on January 11, 2009 at 02:20 PM | Permalink


hopefully that was Peppers last game with us, what a waste of talent, the only way i knew he played was because the Cardinals fullback ran him over, good riddance and take Jake with you!!

Posted by: charlotteguy08 | Jan 11, 2009 2:47:10 PM

charlotteguy08 obviously knows nothing about football

Posted by: charlotte guy is retarded | Jan 11, 2009 3:03:23 PM

i know peppers isnt worth 17 million next year to help his teammates up off the ground after they make a play you idiot

Posted by: charlotteguy08 | Jan 11, 2009 3:09:54 PM

ummm....what? pep had one good play. when he tackled the rb for a 2 yard loss. tell me what he did

Posted by: tj | Jan 11, 2009 3:11:43 PM

Jake, lucus, and peppers has to go....we are paying these guys toooo much for them to do nothing, I feel sorry for steve smith, he needs to go to a better team the panthers are not cutting it.

Posted by: Cedric Jacobs | Jan 11, 2009 3:20:04 PM

Jake, lucus, and peppers has to go....we are paying these guys toooo much for them to do nothing, I feel sorry for steve smith, he needs to go to a better team the panthers are not cutting it.

Posted by: Cedric Jacobs | Jan 11, 2009 3:22:35 PM

Peppers is overrated and wants to be paid the big bucks, sorry, he is not deserving of it. I say sign Gross instead since Gross has stated he would like to stay in Carolina, but big headed Peppers has never said he wants to stay here.

Learn from the past Panthers, DO NOT overpay this guy, like you overpaid idiot Delhomme, Foster and others in the past.

Posted by: Bye Bye Peppers | Jan 11, 2009 3:27:15 PM

For anybody who thinks Julius Peppers isn't worth having around... all they need to do is think back to the 1984 NBA draft when Portland passed on Michael Jordan. I think we all know how that turned out. I'm telling you... letting Peppers leave this this franchise will literally be the exact same scenario. Mark my words, it will be a major mistake to let him leave.

Posted by: Huskers86 | Jan 11, 2009 3:28:35 PM

huskers86, pep plays 2 or 3 games a year!!!! He doesnt want to be here. what did he do last night besides 1 tackle 4 a 2 yard loss?

Posted by: tj | Jan 11, 2009 3:32:18 PM

I think you guys are a disgrace and not worthy of being called Panthers fans. Where is the loyalty? You guys suck and I am glad you don't get to decide who stays and goes!

Posted by: Sher | Jan 11, 2009 3:36:10 PM

I like Peppers, but he isn't worth $17M a year for what he delivers on the field. If he wants to go somewhere else, let him; we can make better use of that kind of money hiring, for instance, a better quarterback than the worthless SACK we have right now.

Posted by: Clayj | Jan 11, 2009 3:42:32 PM

I say lets all stay loyal and settle for mediocrisy, good point. I am so loyal i say put Hoover and Goings in the backfield they've been here longer.See ya Peppers.

Posted by: charlotteguy08 | Jan 11, 2009 3:47:39 PM

So OK let's say we dump Peppers you smart, smart people. We don't have a first round pick this year or tons of free agent money. Who's this spectacular replacement you have in mind? Peppers set a personal and team record for sacks this year. In his time in the league he has had exactly one bad season, and it was merely ordinary made to seem bad by how good he's been in every other season. I still think he's still arguably the best in the game at his position if you take the team's situation out of the equation. What we need is a better compliment at the other end (Brayton shouldn't be starting and Johnson is still unproven) and better depth at the tackle spots. Then they could capitalize on the attention Peppers receives like we did a few years back. Peppers isn't the problem, and I can think of 14.5 reasons why from this season alone.

Calling Peppers overrated is at least ignorant and probably completely stupid. There was plenty of bad to go around last night. It sounds like you're mad at Peppers for not saving us better while the wheels came off. Now is that reasonable?

Posted by: Jones | Jan 11, 2009 3:47:48 PM

Get these morons out of here. Peppers is our best players besides Smith. He has 14.5 sacks this season; who else do we have that even got close? Get your heads out of your f'ing asses. Start McCown, get rid of Lucas; and lets resign gross and peppers (whose figure if he is resigned will only be about 13 Mil)

Posted by: Nate | Jan 11, 2009 3:50:26 PM

Oh, and I'll bet a year's salary that whether through extension or the franchise tag, Peppers will play in Carolina next year. My advice for all of you who can't stand the thought of that is to start making your peace with it. Peppers isn't going anywhere. You'd do better to hope for the extension since it will save the team money. And we DO all want what's best for the team, right?

Posted by: Jones | Jan 11, 2009 3:56:36 PM

The NFL is all about the salary cap, look at the Pats, they stay under the cap.

Putting most of the money in Peppers, Jake, Smith, Gross will make us like the 49ers


Posted by: MikeBona | Jan 11, 2009 4:10:42 PM

One of the bad things about being a Panthers fan is having to deal with 50% of the fan base being total morons. $17M is the franchise tag salary, idiots. If we sign him to a new contract, it'll be more like $5-7M.

Peppers can't be replaced. If you let him go, that just means there will be no more double-teams and the opposing OL will have an extra guy to block.

Posted by: Authority | Jan 11, 2009 4:17:16 PM

If you read the quotes from Peppers in the article you should be able to read between the lines. Peppers doesn't want to be a Panther. I say trade him for a quarterback. Yea he had 14.5 sacks, but its feast or famine with Peppers. He is just too inconsistant to be the highest paid defensive player in the NFL. There is no better time to trade him than now. Trade him for a starting quarterback, cut Delhomme and Lucas and use the cleared cap space to go after some starters in free agency.

Posted by: J Thomas | Jan 11, 2009 4:26:21 PM

I keep seeing the 17 mil number thrown around as salary. Given that the average top DE pay for a season is something like 9.3 mil where are we getting 17 mil from

Posted by: thevorlon | Jan 11, 2009 4:27:07 PM

Authority your right most panthers fans dont know what there talking about.

the team as the talent it needs a new direction in schemes and a new qb

not pep fault he good and gets double team and your little moron d choord does not know how to make blitz packages let some one like eagels def choord get a hold of the panthers d you be talking about how great they are.
we fail for our on hype our team got exposed and the fairweather fans dont know how to take it.

Posted by: davidcover2 | Jan 11, 2009 4:32:10 PM

I suggest everyone take a deep breath and let this bad taste in our mouths air out before we go giving up one of the best all around football players in the NFL. Just because the coaches didn't put him in the right schemes to make him most effective, doesn't mean Peppers is not a super athlete. Now--Jake--that's a different story. Our first draft pick should be a new QB. By now, Jake should realize when he's having a bad day and pull himself out of the game!!

Posted by: Richard Smith | Jan 11, 2009 4:34:13 PM

No way peppers plays here for 5-7 million....where ever he plays he will be the highest paid defensive lineman in the league. Motivated and focussed he might be worth it. It won't be here, he is lackadaisical here 60% of the time. He needs new motivation and we need to spend that kind of money upgrading the entire defense. Thomas Davis is mediocre, Lucas is poor most nights. 15 million a year gets you three very good players; an end, a lb and a cb or it gets you unmotivated but hugely talented peppers.

Logic folks.

Posted by: cmo | Jan 11, 2009 4:41:42 PM

Jake doesn't always choke in big games. But the coaches (Fox) have to be able to recognize when he's having a bad day--early! Jake doesn't recover, ever, when he's having a bad game. Before last night, he had the highest playoff QB rating of any present playing QB. But anyone who's watched the Panthers for more than a couple of years realizes that when Jake is off, he's really off!! We need a good back up to stick in when that happens.

Posted by: Thundercat | Jan 11, 2009 4:43:41 PM

17 mil is just the potential salary for one year if Peppers is not signed. The panthers need to resign Peppers! We need to dump the QB's (both Jake and McCown are both garbage), Lucas is old and slow, Gamble is ok, but my question is, how can we hire an offensive coordinator from Cleveland when he couldn't get the Browns to win? Start revamping the coaches first, then the QB's, then some of the Defense!

Posted by: Jeff | Jan 11, 2009 4:45:56 PM

The 17 million dollar number comes from, as I understand it, the rules require to pay a franchised player the average of the top five at that position or 120% his prior years salary whichever is greater, not the average of all defensive ends. As Peppers already counts nearly 15 million against the cap, add 20% and there you go.

Remember Faber College...knowledge is good.

Posted by: cmo | Jan 11, 2009 4:47:35 PM

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