Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Thomas Davis must be cut or restructured; what about Clausen?

The Observer's Joseph Person wrote an eye-opening look at the Panthers' salary-cap issues in today's newspaper, including the fact that the team is a reported $9.6 million over the cap and must drop that number by the start of the new NFL fiscal year on March 13th.

The first thing the Panthers must do: Figure out Thomas Davis's contract, because it absolutely won't work in the current scenario. The Panthers have a club option to pay Davis $8 million for next season by March 14th, and if you think they're going to do that, I've got a bridge in New York I'd like to sell you.

Davis is rehabbing hard and is one of the great guys in the Panthers' locker room. But the fact remains that he has torn the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee three times in the past 22 months. That knee is, quite literally, damaged goods until proven otherwise.

The scenario that makes the most sense is the Panthers releasing Davis and then re-signing him later for an enormous discount compared to that $8 million. They are going to have to do something like that, because as much as everyone in the organization wants Davis to succeed, there's no way to say that he will. And it's a safe maneuver, too, because what other NFL team wants to pick up a linebacker who has had three ACL tears in the same knee?

The other really interesting decision: Will the Panthers pay Jimmy Clausen a $923,000 roster bonus or cut him to save almost a million dollars?

This one is not as cut-and-dried as the Davis scenario. Cam Newton spoiled the Panthers last season by starting all 16 games, but you can't count on that every year, especially the way Newton plays. Is Clausen a viable backup? Or will the Panthers go with a veteran like Derek Anderson and cut bait with Clausen, who was pretty horrible in 2010 (going 1-9 as a starter)?

Ultimately, I think this one isn't as simple as it may seem. Because if you're not going to pay Clausen money to stay, you're going to invest similar or more money in someone else. I would imagine that coach Ron Rivera and general manager Marty Hurney will have to huddle up closely about this one.

But the Davis deal? That one is a no-brainer -- it has to be radically modified for Davis to ever play for Carolina again.

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

if they don't cut clausen they are stupid....but i bet they keep him.

Anonymous said...

Cut and re-sign Davis, Cut Clausen. Trade DeAngelo Williams.

Anonymous said...

Cut Claussen, if Armante Edwards is still here let him be the third option at QB.

Anonymous said...

Cut Clausen and Godfrey. Godrey is worse at his position than Clausen is to QB...(and that's pretty bad)

Anonymous said...

sherrod martins worse than godfrey

Anonymous said...

Tell me more about this bridge.....

Anonymous said...

Would anyone trade their past three years for Davis'? Reg Season Games played, 9 out of 48. Paid $14,868,000 including signing bonuses, avg $4,956,000 per year, $1,652,000 per game played. 3 surgeries, some pain, mandatory show up at gym to rehab and stay in shape. Sounds like a MasterCard commercial.

Anonymous said...

Why does it make more sense to cut Davis and then sign him back than to simply redo his contract without cutting him?

Anonymous said...

By cutting Davis now and avoiding the bonus the team gets the benefit of time and allow the market to determine his value should he get any offers.

I can also see the point about Clausen; the team will spend a million bucks on pretty much any decent back-up and the Panthers haven't gotten any return on their investment yet and may want another look. I think it's more of a locker room issue than a money issue.

Anonymous said...

Baker: cut
Mare: cut
Clausen: cut
Davis: cut
Otah: cut
Armanti Edwards: cut
Marty Hurney: cut

Would love for someone to explain to me how Mare, Baker and the special teams coach haven't been barred from Charlotte already.

Teddy Ruxpin said...

Marty Hurney has to be the worst GM in the league. Great, you drafted Cam Newton. What else? $10 million over the salary cap and you built a 6-10 team out of that? Pathetic.

Unfortunately until Jerry kicks the bucket we're stuck with Marty, and have to continue to see him worshipped and have his mistakes overlooked from his lackeys in the local media.

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous 10:17 you are a complete moron. Why on earth would anyone want to trade D-Will? he is our 1-2 punch with J-Stew. They should try and trade Goodson. He fumbles the ball way too much.

Anonymous said...

for all you idiots, Marty has drafted steve smith, julius peppers, kris jenkinsk, jordan gross, ryan kalil, deangello williams, jonathan stewart and traded for greg olsen to name a few. go get educated about what you're talking about before you go filling up these message boards with dumbass comments. our roster is loaded with talent because of marty hurney. the problem was injuries last year.

John said...

Both Clausen and Anderson need to be looked at closely... if either, or both are unable to run the same offense that's being designed for Newton, then they should go.

Anonymous said...

fire hurney and punch jerry in the chest real hard.

Mike K. said...

to "Anonymous" at 2:09...
Hurney didn't draft Smith or "Jenkinsk". Think you meant Jenkins.

Maybe before you start calling people idiots and telling them to get educated you should do a bit of that yourself. There's nothing worse than an misinformed idiot like yourself calling people idiots.

and stop spelling like the chick fil a cows. idiot.

Anonymous said...

Jerry I apologize for the idiot that just posted. Don't understand why comments like this aren't removed.

Anonymous said...

Hurney NEEDS to be ACCOUNTABLE for and discuss issues about the Panthers' salary cap management. It appears, once AGAIN, that he royally messed up as "GM" -- How can the Panthers be one of 4 teams to be OVER the cap?!?!? Last year's moves & UNREASONABLE OVERPAYMENT of players has shown that Hurney has NO VISION for proper management in anything, including the draft!!! Aside from Newton, who else did Hurney select last year that made a decent impact?!? The 1st step to real improvement is to find a replacement for "GM" Marty Hurney so he can go back to being a journalist, because he can't "manage" anything.

Anonymous said...

Thomas Davis is probably a foregone conclusion unless the Panthers can strike a contract laden with incentives and no cap money. Clausen WILL be a cap casualty...there's no way JR & Co will pay him $900K against the cap to be inactive, plust he still has market value as does Armanti Edwards. Although a bust for the Cats, he has great skills and could succeed elsewhere.....perhaps a bundle of Clausen and Edwards for a draft pick?... Word around the campfire is that Josh Johnson may be available but I don't see the Panthers putting a pressing need on Tall Strong and Fast QB's.

The biggest need is at OG and DT....granted Gamble needs an opposite or the likes of a ball-hawk safety like Mark Barron.

I think the Panthers take Michael Brockers, hope for some OL depth in the second round and get a little help at CB/S for gamble...

Anonymous said...

CUT LIST:

Clausen, Edwards, Nannee, and Baker. Davis, see below*

RESTRUCTURE LIST:

Otah, Wharton, Mare, and give Smith a restructured extension to free up some current cap space

Cut Davis, and if he wants to play this year for us, then sign him to league minimum since he's already been paid very well for a few seasons to do nothing but rehab. Plus there is no guarantee that he's not going to tear the ACL again in the first week or 2. If he does well this season and actually makes it through, then give him a little bonus and extension.

Anonymous said...

If Cam gets hurt, Clausen isn't the answer anyway. I'd cut him and hope to pick up a serviceable backup either through the draft or free agency.

And no, the Panthers will not cut DWill or The Daily Show. Tandem RBs are en vogue right now in the NFL and not without merit - the tandem style saves wear and tear off two skill position players over the long term.

I'd say cut Davis and sign him to the league minimum + performance incentives. I also wouldn't bring Shockey back and ditch Wharton and Baker. Easy enough to get a better punter and we've got depth where Wharton plays. TD + Wharton + Clausen + Baker = $18.6MM in savings, putting the Panthers $9MM under cap, giving them money to use to sign back TD and go get a punter and backup QB.

Anonymous said...

Agreed that cutting Clausen is more of a locker room issue. His cap number isn't outrageous for a backup QB, but does the coaching staff trust him to slide into the no. 2 spot (assuming Anderson isn't retained)? And from most things I've read, Clausen doesn't seem to be a favorite in the locker room -- a little aloof.

Smith is a good candidate for restructuring, as is Gamble, although after last season (and considering our lack of depth at CB) Gamble is in pretty good bargaining position.

It's probably time to say goodbye to Wharton and Baker, though.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I didn't know that the Charlotte area had so many NFL cap experts. Not only are many of you cap experts, you're also personnel experts.

You're opinions are like noses. Everyone has one. Why don't you support the players who are on the field for your favorite team?

Some people on this blog have some manners. I agree with those who take issue with some of the nasty comments being made about Jerry Richardson and Marty Hurney. I only wish some of you were held as accountable at your places of employment...if you are employed.

Anonymous said...

Most of the idiot commenters are fans of other teams...cowpiles, pittspuke, or foulcuns.

Anonymous said...

CUT Armanti Edwards so I wont get sick to my stomach every time he gets near the ball

Sportsdon said...

Clausen has got to go, he's the shleprock (old school Flintstone reference) of the Panthers!

Edwards may be able to catch on in Canada?

Davis may need to move to DE so he doesn't have to cut and run so much if he want's to survive more then a few weeks next year.