Today’s 4pm deadline is fast approaching. By that time, the Carolina Panthers will have to designate their franchise player which also means that to use it on Julius Peppers, they’ll have to have a deal done with Jordan Gross.
From the Charlotte Observer:
According to sources, the Panthers and Gross’s representatives are close to finalizing a frontloaded, six-year agreement with Gross that would pay him $30.5 million over the first three years of the deal – the biggest three-year payout ever to an offensive lineman.
Talk about your economic stimulus! Jordan could keep a number of stores open all by himself.
From the Rock Hill Herald:
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 defensive end 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.
He can’t be dealt until Feb. 27, the day free agency begins.
It’s not all that complicated, really. Apply the tag and then wait until February 27. If Peppers wants to go elsewhere he’ll have that chance.
Today could be a busy day but an expensive one in Charlotte.