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February 23, 2010

Hurney: $20 million for Peppers too much

    Carolina Panthers general manager Marty Hurney did the expected Tuesday, announcing that the team would not use the franchise tag on defensive end Julius Peppers.

    The 30-year-old Peppers will now enter the unrestricted free agent market, and the Panthers will be left to fill a spot that’s been nailed down for eight years.

    Hurney said Tuesday the decision ultimately came down to the team’s unwillingness to swallow more than $20 million for another tag, even if that meant letting him walk with no compensation. He used the word “magnitude,” several times in discussing the tender, showing that the finances were what brought this deal down.

    Hurney also mentioned several times the young core of players that needed contracts in the near future -- though he didn’t name them, players such as linebackers Thomas Davis and Jon Beason, center Ryan Kalil and running back DeAngelo Williams -- as central to the decision to not tag Peppers.

    “You have to weigh everything,” Hurney said. “We feel like we’ve drafted very well in recent years, ... We have some very talented young players that in the future that have to be addressed at some point.

    “All those things are factors.”

    Hurney stressed there were negotiations recently, and that he wasn’t closing the door on talking to agent Carl Carey again in the future, while acknowledging that it was very unlikely that Peppers would return.   

    “We have felt for some time that Julius would have the opportunity to test the free agent market in 2010,” Carey said in an e-mail. “He has had a very accomplished career thus far; but he is convinced that with this move he will thrive and develop fully into the player he was destined to become.

    “He is excited about his future and looking forward to the process of selecting his next destination.”

-- Darin Gantt

Posted by Observer Sports on February 23, 2010 at 03:47 PM | Permalink


Later, Poop.

Posted by: dangburnit | Feb 23, 2010 3:50:40 PM

See Ya. Good luck with your dumb A!$ trying to learn another system

Posted by: Roland | Feb 23, 2010 3:53:19 PM

The panthers decided in a un-capped year not to pay the extra 4 million a year to Peppers and let him walk for free. Sounds like Jerry and company are getting cheap.

Posted by: it | Feb 23, 2010 3:56:49 PM

finally...im glad they realized that no player besides a top flight qb is worth that much..smart choice, four or five very good young players over a 30 year old guy who shows up three to four times a season.

Posted by: ftbs11 | Feb 23, 2010 4:09:18 PM

Mark my word, he will be homeless and penniless within 2 years of being done with football because is a lazy moron.

Posted by: Bye Bye Peppers | Feb 23, 2010 4:14:37 PM

I've always been a big "Pep" fan, but this was the right move. This past off season we lost several good players that we could not afford to keep because of Pep's inflated salary. I keep hearing that "you can't let Peppers walk without getting anything in return," but I completely disagree. The Panthers are getting 20+ mil. a year that we can now use to sign great young players who ALWAYS play hard. Great choice by Jerry and the gang!

Good luck Pep. I doubt you will find a good team willing to pay you that much money, but I hope it works out for you.

Posted by: Matt West | Feb 23, 2010 4:16:13 PM


Cheap? Are you kidding? They paid him 18 million dollars last year, they're not cheap. You can't pay him that much money, its just too darn much. And for what? 1 more season? He's 30 years old anyways, DE's can play well until 33-34, but even so his prime is on the back end and we have other things to worry about.

There are several financial factors that could have come into play, such as whether the panthers can afford to pay for peppers AND resign the other players. Yes, we are without a cap this season. But every team has an owner and every owner has a budget.

Also, assuming we do not have a lockout in 2011, a salary cap WILL be re instituted, and Ryan Kahlil, Beason, and Deangelo Williams are all guys that will be entering free agency or the last year of their contracts after this season. Each other those guys could probably (unless they get injured or just collapse) demand 25+ mil in guarantees and 50-60 million dollar contracts. Not to mention the relatively (for a career backup QB) high price we'll be paying to Matt Moore and the big contract to Thomas Davis.

Posted by: Gamble20 | Feb 23, 2010 4:21:33 PM


Posted by: Yes | Feb 23, 2010 4:21:42 PM

Congratulations Pepp, you've gotten what you wanted now you will get what you deserve. The Panthers (organization and fans) have been agonizingly patient with you because of your freakish talent. The only consistent part of your game was the apathy with which you approached it and I for one applaud the decision of the team.

Go chase your millions, go be where you want to be but be prepared for a level of scrutiny you have never known and certainly will not be able to handle, regardless of all that freakish talent.

You never had the will to succeed, just a natural gift to and I guess that's what makes you and your story all the more pathetic.

Good riddance.

Posted by: pantherfaninyankeeland | Feb 23, 2010 4:24:21 PM

Hurney ,If you worked for FREE you would be OVER-PAYED...can't wait til the door hits you in the a**.

Posted by: hellfish | Feb 23, 2010 4:29:49 PM

I have one question...

Who are we going to sign with the extra $20 mill that we are saving in this diluted FA market this year? T.O. and/or Javon Kearse?


The FA talent out there is so weak, that is why keeping the talent that you do have this offseason is so important.

I know that Fox and Hurney have a gameplan on how they are going to attack this offseason as far as acquisitions, but thats the thing that REALLY scares me....

Posted by: hackney | Feb 23, 2010 4:32:05 PM

Hurney is this to free up money to keep Fox and Jake the uncapped year. A player that has been here his whole career. Even Sam Mills got a statue. I hope he lands in Atlanta/ Tampa Bay and lines up and takes it out on Jake next year. And get a good sideline shot on Hurney.

Posted by: greene | Feb 23, 2010 4:38:59 PM

@Hackney - you do have a point. The way the CBA was written was to severely restrict FA's in an uncapped year, so the crop is going to be thin.

HOWEVER - I could live with Anquan Boldin...can you imagine? It's iffy if the front office will entertain bringing him here, but with the signing Ed Johnson, who himself has some not-so-favorable off the field history, I guess anything is possible.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 23, 2010 4:42:36 PM

see ya Pep go kick rocks w/ sandals on should have took the 5yr/ 75 mil they offered ur slow county a_ last off season u can always come back once ur agent gets his d_ out your a_ Go Panthers!!!

Posted by: hotness | Feb 23, 2010 4:44:55 PM

@greene -

Don't forget that Jordan Gross has been workin against him for essentially Gross's entire career, and I don't think he scares anybody in Charlotte.

He's not going to an NFC South team - New Orleans can't even bid on him (Final Four team), the Falcons have been saying all along they're going to be fiscally responsible, and Tampa??? PLEASE!

It will be interesting to watch play out. Personally, I hope he never sees a Super Bowl ever again, and that he gets his butt eaten alive by the media and fans of whatever team he lands with for taking plays off.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 23, 2010 4:46:19 PM

Honestly, I don't think peppers knows what he wants and I honestly don't think peppers even really wants to leave. its the Panthers who said you aren't worth it. He's like that ex-girlfriend that doesn't really love you but can't imagine not being able to have sex with you.

Posted by: Gamble20 | Feb 23, 2010 4:58:56 PM

And Scotts right.

I would LOVE for peppers to end up in the NFC South with the Bucs or Falcons. Why would we be afraid of him? Although, he does play better when he is actually motivated, but the man is as passive aggressive as Elton John. The Panthers know exactly what to do to screw him up, and Gross and the entire line has seen what he can do before.

Also, Falcons are playing it safe, Bucs are traditionally cheap (and not winners), and the Saints are basically ineligible unless they cut somebody with a similar salary such as Brees.

Posted by: Gamble20 | Feb 23, 2010 5:01:55 PM

He'll sign for cheap money with the cowgirls;Panthers will meat them in the playoffs and kick his and Jerry Jones butt

Posted by: dee gray | Feb 23, 2010 5:07:19 PM

The PANTHERS release Peppers and keep Delhomme - for SIX YEARS!!!!???

Posted by: blackspeak | Feb 23, 2010 5:13:37 PM

thank God it is finally over. the team is no longer hostage to one player and the Cats can return to "normalcy."

Posted by: andrew | Feb 23, 2010 5:23:57 PM

why is everyone so frakkin' angry? pep gets what he wants - good luck to him, my family and i have certainly enjoyed his play more often than not - the panthers have $20 million to invest in their core group of EXTREMELY talented young players and to invest in sensibly priced, highly motivated free agents. everyone wins, and thanks for the memories.

good luck Pep - except when you play us.

Posted by: enjoylife | Feb 23, 2010 5:26:00 PM

For those of you who question what the Panthers could do with the money due to Peppers, how about actually paying draft picks?

Posted by: Josh | Feb 23, 2010 5:26:59 PM

@ Gamble20,

So your opinion to my comment is that we don not need a 2nd WR or a DE to replace Pepp?

That makes alot of sense...

Posted by: hackney | Feb 23, 2010 5:27:18 PM

hackney why did you post that twice?

You can see my response on the other headline you posted on.

Posted by: Gamble20 | Feb 23, 2010 5:39:57 PM

The player he's destined to become? So he wants to be the highest paid player in the league and he's not there yet?

Posted by: Zon | Feb 23, 2010 6:13:43 PM

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