As you may know, the Arizona Cardinals are desperately in need of an outside linebacker that can blitz opposing quarterbacks. Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers fits that profile and he's been pleading his case to leave Carolina to play in a 3-4 defense as a linebacker since last season.
Peppers just turned 30 in January which means if the Cardinals were to offer him a contract I'd have to assume it would be in the three year range, meaning by 33 he could be extended or released. The only problem is the price. Peppers was franchised this past season and made nearly $18 million, and would draw $21 million if the Panthers were to franchise him again.
It's well known that Peppers would command money around that range, and he wants to be one of the highest paid players in the league. Assuming that's true, he'd be a long shot to join the Cardinals. A man can dream though can't he?
As an end, Peppers had 10.5 sacks on the year and also appeared in the Pro Bowl. Those who argue that his production has took a dip should look at his career numbers. He didn't have over 12 sacks for the first four years of his career, and the14.5 sacks in 2008 were a career high. That means the last two seasons he's sacked quarterbacks a total of 25 times.
|2009 - Julius Peppers||14||10.5||52.5||2||13||1||36||6||42|
Another problem the Cardinals would face is their situation with Karlos Dansby. He's set to become a free agent and has expressed his desire to become well paid. He himself is also approaching 30-years old and has been franchised two years straight. Should the Cardinals sign both of these men, they would shore up their needs at linebacker - but that doesn't seem likely. What do you feel the Cardinals should do? Should they go after Peppers if the price is right or focus primarily on Dansby?