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Panthers Franchise Julius Peppers


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Panthers Franchise Julius Peppers --

Thu Feb 19, 2009 --from FFMastermind.com


NFL.com's Adam Schefter reports moments after completing a deal for OT Jordan Gross, the Carolina Panthers designated DE Julius Peppers as their franchise player, a league source confirmed Thursday. Peppers' franchise number is $16.683 million, but it is hardly the money that Peppers wants. He wants his freedom, the ability to leave Carolina and go play in a city that would be desirable to him. Now that the Gross issue is out of the way, the Panthers can focus on resolving the one involving Peppers. Carolina and Gross reached agreement Thursday on a record six-year contract worth just under $60 million that will pay out $30.5 million in the first three years of the deal, a league source said. The $30.5 million over the deal's first three years is highest ever for an offensive lineman.


-- Panthers Officially Re-Sign Jordan Gross --

Thu Feb 19, 2009 --from FFMastermind.com


The Rock Hill Herald reports the Carolina Panthers have officially signed OLT Jordan Gross to a new six-year contract. “We're done,” he said with a sigh. “I signed it about 10 minutes ago, and I'm glad to be through with it.” Gross admitted the negotiation was much tougher this year, after he turned in an All-Pro season at left tackle. That ratcheted up the market from what would have been a $7 million per year deal a year ago to the $9 million per year range this year. He'll make $30.5 million in the first three years of the deal, which sets a new benchmark for linemen in the league. When the final numbers are tallied, he's also expected to be the highest-paid Panther ever. “It was tough, because they had a number they wanted to stay within,” Gross said. “But if I go into the (free agent) market, the sky would have been the limit. I took a cut to stay here, but it was important for me to be in a place I wanted to be, and to make sure we were able to have a competitive team.” By doing so, the Panthers are now clear to place the franchise tag on DE Julius Peppers. Tagging Peppers means offering a one-year, $16.683 million contract, and he's already said he'd ask for a trade immediately. His camp put out word Wednesday that there's a list of four teams to which he'd accept a trade, two in the division, Dallas and one AFC team. The Panthers won't deal him to another NFC South team, and Dallas lacks a first-round pick, which would be the foundation for any trade. The bar for such deals was set last year when Kansas City shipped franchised DE Jared Allen to Minnesota for a first-rounder and two thirds. Now the Panthers have to sit and wait for an appropriate trade, while absorbing a hit on their salary cap which will prevent much activity on the free agent market until Peppers is moved. It will also necessitate some degree of restructuring and cuts for current players. Peppers couldn't be dealt until Feb. 27, the day free agency begins.

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