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October 06, 2010

Julius Peppers on Panthers: 'It was a little sour'

For most of a 20-minute conference call with Charlotte reporters Wednesday, former Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers took the high road when talking about his time with the Panthers and what it means to play his old team this week with the Chicago Bears.

But near the end of the teleconference, Peppers took a couple of shots at the team that drafted him in the first round in 2002 out of North Carolina.

Peppers said he was disappointed his eight years with the Panthers ended on a sour note.

Asked to elaborate, Peppers said he didn’t appreciate the way his departure was handled. Peppers said he never received a call from team officials to inform him they were not going to re-sign him.

“I don’t have a problem with them saying, ‘OK, the lockout is coming up. The future of the league is uncertain, and we’re going to go in a different direction. We’re going to do away with anybody who was making any significant amount of money, and we’re going to keep young guys.’ That’s a business decision. I can understand that and respect that,” Peppers said.

“The problem that I had was that they tried to turn the tables to make it look like I wanted out, no matter what. And really, I didn’t have the option to stay because it was never offered to stay. So that’s the thing when I say it ended a little sour, I felt like it could have been a little more respectful.

“At least a phone call to say, ‘Hey, it’s been good. We’re going a different direction. We’re going to let you go.’ They couldn’t even give me that. So that’s why I say it was a little sour.”

In an interview last week, Panthers general manager Marty Hurney said the Panthers twice made Peppers offers to make him the NFL’s highest-paid defensive player.

Peppers said those offers came a couple of years ago. He said the Panthers did not negotiate with him this past offseason before he signed a six-year, $91.5 million contract with the Bears.

Carolina placed the “franchise” tag on Peppers in 2009, when he made $16.7 million (plus an additional $1.5 million for making the Pro Bowl) as the league’s highest-paid player last year.

Despite his 81 sacks and five Pro Bowl appearances with the Panthers, Peppers said it bothered that critics claimed he would often take plays off.

“If people look at the numbers and stop making up stuff about how I played, (they’ll) realize I’ve done well and I think I exceeded past expectations when I was brought to that team.”

--Joseph Person

Posted by Observer Sports on October 6, 2010 at 02:09 PM | Permalink


Julius is an idiot and his "manager" is even worse. The Panthers offered to make him the highest paid defensive player in the league two years in a row, the last coming before the 2000-2010 season. Team Peppers NEVER RESPONDED. There is nothing wrong with him wanting out and he chose to disregard the offer that was made. To say it was disrespectful for them to not come back again is stupid.

Posted by: JM | Oct 6, 2010 2:33:36 PM

Players are out of control. I hope the NFL locks out. Management needs to flex a little muscle with the NFLPA. Employee meet employer. He's the only reason you have a job.

Posted by: Sam | Oct 6, 2010 2:33:37 PM


Posted by: jeff | Oct 6, 2010 2:35:34 PM

It's funny how people take what Darin and others write and call it the unvarnished truth. Darin gets his info from the Panthers and it will always be what the Panthers want you to hear.

Posted by: Authority | Oct 6, 2010 2:39:16 PM

He is going to harm Jimmy Clausen.

Posted by: Frieda's Boss | Oct 6, 2010 2:41:31 PM

Wow I respect Peppers, but let it go man.

You had good and bad times here, we understand you needed a fresh start. But don't act like the Panthers never gave you an offer.

You have wanted out of here for the past 2-3 years. They were trying trade you, but didn't he wait until July to sign the $18.5 million tender?

Leaving the team to let go good back ups players? The lack of cap flexibility to only sign draft picks, but no FA's.

Posted by: adam carter | Oct 6, 2010 2:43:36 PM

"Peppers Rips Panthers" Really? I must have missed that part of the story.

Posted by: Stewart | Oct 6, 2010 2:44:06 PM

I don't see any "ripping".

Posted by: Tyler | Oct 6, 2010 2:44:19 PM

Peppers is a moron. If he really wanted to remain with the Panthers he would have signed the contract they offered after the 07 season. The one where he only sacked the QB twice in 16 games. But instead he tries to make it look like he wasn't wanted. Give me a break. 3 words Panthers O-Line. Sweep the knee. I hope this big clown gets carted off the field sunday.

Posted by: Smiley | Oct 6, 2010 2:47:37 PM

I wasn't on the call or anything, but how is that Peppers "ripping" the Panthers? Sounds like the "Jon Stewart eviscerates Rick Sanchez" overstatement.

Posted by: Brandon | Oct 6, 2010 2:47:40 PM

Lmao, $20 million for this year is sure doing him alot good in Chicago to all of a sudden talking alot more.

The man was mostly a "mute" in Carolina, but changes are good for some people. Him or any athelete would have taken the most money they can get.

So their wasn't no gurantee he would have stayed with the Panthers. Enjoy your $20 million this year, $9 million next year, and $11 million in 2012.

Once your contract is up, he probably will be release once he starts to decline. What would be nice for Carolins to do is sign him to a 1 day contract and retire as a Panther.

Posted by: mark smith | Oct 6, 2010 2:48:21 PM

I'm a huge Panthers fan. But because of the ignorant and unappreciative attitude of the fans, the media, & some of the Panthers front office, I hope Peppers becomes a 1-man defense against us and have a career game. Rip it up Peps !!!!

Posted by: T | Oct 6, 2010 2:48:38 PM

Me either Tyler...Don't why so many fans 'hate' him so much either. I wish him well other than this Sunday. I feel sorry for Clausen though.

Posted by: Rawjem | Oct 6, 2010 2:48:52 PM

No "ripping." Misleading headline.

Posted by: Pep | Oct 6, 2010 2:49:12 PM

How did he "rip" the Panthers???After we tossed Brad Hoover to the curb like he was nothing it opened my eyes.The team will run you in the ground and as soon as you loose a step they toss you..So lets not criticize Peppers side of the story to much.He wanted something diff. just like all of us.A coach that isn't stubborn and a organization that wants to win...

Posted by: bryant80 | Oct 6, 2010 2:49:13 PM

Beware Jimmy Clausen! Pike might have to finish this game.

Posted by: jd | Oct 6, 2010 2:50:01 PM

@ words "CHOP BLOCK" all nite long for that crybaby!

Posted by: hellfish | Oct 6, 2010 2:50:47 PM


Lol wow, was Brad H an elite player? The man back was giving up on him.

But knowing majority of these fans, he was the big reason Williams/Stewart ran over 1100 yards each?

If he was so good to great how come no other teams signed him?

Posted by: mark smith | Oct 6, 2010 2:51:25 PM

We were idiots to let this future hall of famer go! He is the best to ever suit up in a Panther uniform. I hope he KILLS the oline and Clauson Sunday. And after every sack, he turns to the Big Cat and grabs his crotch. Eat it JR!!!

Posted by: VisithadessoonJR | Oct 6, 2010 2:52:29 PM

GO PEP!!!!!!!

Posted by: big daddy | Oct 6, 2010 2:53:31 PM

I don't know what's worse, the missing words in the second paragraph that made it to print here or Peppers calling it a lockup.

Posted by: biff | Oct 6, 2010 2:53:58 PM


So Peppers is worth $21.5 million if franchise again? Wow.

Posted by: mark smith | Oct 6, 2010 2:55:17 PM

I can think of one upcoming game where Peppers will not be taking ANY plays off. Who`s our 4th string QB??

We miss him here in Charlotte.

Posted by: 3EYEZ | Oct 6, 2010 2:55:53 PM

What do you expect from a UNC player? University of NO CLASS.

Posted by: Fatty McButterpants | Oct 6, 2010 2:56:47 PM

Panthers suck, hes going to abuse the Panthers Oline.

Posted by: jd | Oct 6, 2010 2:59:08 PM

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