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February 09, 2010

Peppers calls Panthers' silence a "turn off," but remains open about his future

   Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers remained noncommittal about his future plans Tuesday, and said the team’s lack of communication with him and his agent “is kind of a turnoff.”

   “Because of the lack of communication they’ve had with us, if someone were to ask me do I want to stay in Carolina and play for the Panthers next year, it’s like, ok, how can you say you want to be somewhere when you’re not really sure if they want you here because they’re not even talking to you,” Peppers said in an interview with Charlotte radio station WFNZ 610-AM, aired Tuesday morning.

   Peppers’ agent, Carl Carey, said recently that the Panthers had not contacted him since the end of the season to discuss his client’s future with the team. Peppers contract is expiring and he’s eligible to become an unrestricted free agent March 5.

   The Panthers’ options include applying the franchise tag for the second consecutive year, which would require them to make him a one-year tender offer of more than $20 million; trying to sign him  to a long-term contract; or allowing him to become an unrestricted free agent and get nothing in return for his loss.

   The NFL's two-week window in which teams can apply franchise tags opens Thursday. The deadline for any such move is Feb. 25.

   Peppers said in the interview that he has not talked to the Panthers but that the team has sent Carey “a couple of vague text messages … nothing of substance.”

   “I could take it that they’re not really wanting to say anything,” said Peppers. “I have no idea what they’re wanting to say.”

   Peppers, who rarely talks to the media, said he has a unique understanding of how to send a message without saying anything.

   “I’m a man of very few words,” he said. “I understand very well what silence means.

   “For a person being silent to me, I understand exactly what you’re trying to say.”

   When asked what he wants now, Peppers was noncommittal.

   “To be honest with you, I really don’t have a preference,” he said. “I’m in a great position. These are options I’m fine with either way they go. If I have to play under the tender, that’s fine. Whatever the other two options are, I’m fine with whatever happens.”

    Peppers didn’t say he wanted to leave the Panthers, but added there was a time last summer when signing a long-term deal with the team “was the option I wanted most. Now it’s not.”

    Peppers said he enjoyed playing for new defensive coordinator Ron Meeks and defensive line coach Brian Baker and felt the defense was moving in a positive direction, something he didn’t feel was the case a year ago at this time when he was saying he wanted to move to another team.

   -- Charles Chandler  

Posted by Observer Sports on February 9, 2010 at 07:53 AM | Permalink


You dont get it both ways Pep..giving the front office the silent treatment two years ago when they reached out to re-sign you to and now being turned off that the tables are turned. Be patient and I bet things will work out.

Posted by: moojie | Feb 9, 2010 8:13:14 AM

Peppers has turned me against him after what he tried to pull. He should change his name to Brett Favre Jr. This is in essence Pep's stand - I know the Panthers tried to make me the highest paid player in the league but that was then this is now and I want to be pampered While people are struggling to make house payments you held out for a million a game no one cares if your feelings are hurt - grow up.

Posted by: mclifford | Feb 9, 2010 8:21:01 AM

For JPep, its not business anymore. Its personal...

Posted by: Blackspeak | Feb 9, 2010 8:25:27 AM

Mac did a GREAT job with this radio interview! WFNZ proves to be the best source of information for our local sports!

Posted by: Iceberg Slim | Feb 9, 2010 8:26:37 AM

Maybe they are silent because they think beginning the negotiating process at $20 million is probably not in their best interest. They offered you the highest paid defensive player in the league contract last year and you laughed in their face. Maybe your "agent" should do his job and actually be proactive in negotiating, giving the Panthers an idea of what you are looking for. Clown.

Posted by: ChunkyLover519 | Feb 9, 2010 8:31:24 AM

I am so sick of Athletes or anyone thinking they are worth millions a year. At 15 million he was overpaid, if the Panthers pay him 20 million I will be very shocked. One of the previous people had it right you can't play games with the team one year as Peppers did last year and not expect the same in return. I would love to keep him as a Panther but sometimes you have to cut your losses, too bad we couldn't at least get something for him, oh yeah we can we can save 15 to 20 million to spend on someone that wants to play here.


Posted by: Tucker | Feb 9, 2010 8:35:06 AM

Peppers didn’t say he wanted to leave the Panthers, but added there was a time last summer when signing a long-term deal with the team “was the option I wanted most. Now it’s not.”

Didn't he say he wanted to LEAVE the Panthers last year??? Didn't he give a "list" of teams he would only be traded to? What an a**clown! GOOD RIDDANCE you freakin POS!

Posted by: MJM | Feb 9, 2010 8:35:25 AM

Chandler, you should have plugged Mac's show. That seems like the right thing to do when relying on his interview for your entire story.

Posted by: Bannon | Feb 9, 2010 8:36:21 AM

The Panthers are screwing this one up. How hard is it to pick up the phone and talk to Peppers or his agent. Even to say we want you here... we just need some time to go through our numbers. Even if you don't want him here make an effort.

Posted by: JB | Feb 9, 2010 8:41:23 AM

Pep not worth $20M/yr. We could sign 3 DE's and get same production.

Posted by: Terry Farkas | Feb 9, 2010 8:44:36 AM

Ahwwww, poor baby! They don't want to talk to me....boo phreakin hoo!
Take your prima-donna bs and your vastly overrated talent elsewhere.
And while you're at it, take these armchair qb's that NEVER go to a game and think you're great with you!

Posted by: PanamaRed | Feb 9, 2010 8:47:14 AM

True Dat Terry!!

Posted by: CHUCK | Feb 9, 2010 8:49:50 AM

The Panthers have to go out and talk with 31 other teams to see if anyone else has any interest and also to see what they would be willing to offer Pep for a longterm deal. Then they will call up Pep and tell him what they think his market value is on the open market. Then the negotiations will begin. You gotta know the market before you know what he is worth. Throw the collective bargaining agreement in there for another wrench in the process. The superbowl was 2 days ago - calm down Pep and Pep's agent.

Posted by: Holla26 | Feb 9, 2010 8:53:41 AM

The Panthers are not going to tag Peppers and risk that he signs the sheet for $20 and potentially $21.5 million with incentives. They are also not going to pay him Albert Haynesworth type money while Jerry Richardson sits on the labor negotiating committee. Not at a time when Jerry is thinking more and more about his legacy. The only alternative is to try to package a deal with a team that Peppers wants to go to where the Panthers get some compensation (2nd & 4th) and the trade is worked out before he is tagged. The only benefit this would be to the trade partner is keeping Peppers off the FA market where there is a chance his value could get bid up. It also gives one of the Top 8 teams a shot at Peppers they wouldn't otherwise have in FA. If the Panthers can't get this done then Peppers will walk into FA where he may not really want to be. The Top 8 rule limits him to a non playoff team. Do you really think Peppers wants to play in some wasteland like Cincinnati or Kansas City? Those are the teams that have expressed the most interest. Actually, it would be fitting. HAH.

Posted by: Jimcat | Feb 9, 2010 8:56:38 AM

They need to keep Pep they should just call him deep down I think he wants to stay if he didn't he would not have done the interview. I think they can get it done this year. I think both sides have bruised egos.

Posted by: Butterfly | Feb 9, 2010 8:57:29 AM

LOL. You folks clown and ridicule the one guy on defense that makes a difference but praise and want to keep the real over rated prima donnas on this team. Its no wonder Peppers wants out. With a conservative, stubborn coach, a GM that trades first round picks, and a QB with the most interceptions in the NFL I can see why he's in no hurry to talk to this team.

Posted by: D.W.G. | Feb 9, 2010 8:58:52 AM

They are not going to call him and he will end up signing a 13mil/year long term deal somewhere else.

We are a stupid franchise.

Posted by: Maj Schaefer | Feb 9, 2010 9:06:22 AM

I would have loved to tune in to the re-broadcast of the interview at 9:00 AM; however, it's hard to listen to the same old horrific morning show with Mac...

- "Back to da phones."

- Reading emails from listeners.

- "Duke sucks!"

- "No, Carolina sucks!"

- Talking with producers more than they talk with an informative guest.

- Laughing incessantly at everything that is not funny.

Too big of a sports town to have a sports radio station full of clowns.

Posted by: SM | Feb 9, 2010 9:06:49 AM

Peppers was asked whether he wants a long-term deal with the team, and he said that's what he used to want -- but not anymore.

"I'm not going to say that, come out and say that," Peppers said. "Last year, at the time, that was the option that I wanted most. But now it's not."

Really????? Was that the same time last year you demanded a trade and said you wouldn't sign a long-term deal with Carolina? Honestly go somewhere else-maybe New England where you can be Belichek's used car (see Richard Seymour, Ted Johnson, Adalius Thomas, etc.) Get out clown, Everette Brown is better and younger and less of a primadonna than you anyways.

Posted by: ChunkyLover519 | Feb 9, 2010 9:13:10 AM

Sounds to me like the Peppers is open for an offer. The Panthers just need to make one and be done with it. The Panthers are acting like a spouse who expect the other person to come up with the solution. Communications have to be both ways. It would be sad to lose such a great player, because of a "management attitude". Panthers need to make their best offer and be done with it. This way if Peppers doesn't like it, then he's free to go. Then Peppers or fans can't blame the organization for not trying. I don't think Peppers is looking for a "great offer" but he should get a "good one". Peppers is a team Player and I'm sure he wouldn't want a salary that will impact his team. If we lose Peppers because of the Panthers "failure to communicate", I will blame them and wish Peppers nothing but the best in the future.

Posted by: ncoutlander | Feb 9, 2010 9:17:22 AM

Were any of the Peppers lovers on here at any of the games. He did nothing all year until Beason called him out on Prime time with the Pacman/WFNZ. He is the most overrated DE in the league, he takes plays off all of the time, I am tired of his crap he can go elsewhere.

Posted by: huh | Feb 9, 2010 9:19:44 AM

It would have been nice of Charles to give credit to Chris McClain rather than just giving the station information. I'll bet if it was his suck up buddy Packer he would have given credit. A note on McClains show...they need to get rid of Sylvania. He is never there and adds very little when he is. His opinion of himself is much higher than how most people feel. Kind of creepy for a 60 year old man to keep talking about the young girls at the station. I heard he offered to pay for implants for one young lady just so she would feel at home with the rest of the fake boob chicks at CBS Radio. Sincerely...someone from Gastiona that KNOWS what goes on around there.

Posted by: Marty | Feb 9, 2010 9:21:08 AM

I mean come on, we paid him a million dollars a game, and still we had a lackluster season. It is time to spend the money elsewhere. Such as QB, other defensive free agents, and a number 2 wide receiver.

Posted by: huh | Feb 9, 2010 9:22:21 AM

Looks to me like Peppers just blinked in this positioning stare-down. Any contract for a player should be based on production and possible claw-backs if goals aren't met. Paying for someone entirely based on their name or past achievements does the opposite of incentives based contracts.

Posted by: charlesbright | Feb 9, 2010 9:26:09 AM

You lames who are hating on Peppers are such hypocrites. You would love to be able to get paid that much money from your job. Look, Football is a business and these guys are not going to be playing it forever. They have to get everything up front because they are looking towards the future. I don't hear anyone complaining about the 12 million dollars that sorry a** Jake will be getting to sit on the bench !!!!! So shut up !!!

Posted by: 'OO' | Feb 9, 2010 9:31:36 AM

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