Peppers Dilemna

Discussion in 'Chicago Bears' started by BSBEARS, Jan 19, 2014.

  1. BSBEARS

    BSBEARS Pro-Bowler

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    I was looking at the salary cap and over the cap shows the following:
    upload_2014-1-19_9-40-21.png

    I am not sure how open Peppers is to a new contract but if he will not do a new contract he will be gone. But if he will sign a new contract for less than $5.5MM a year we would basically break even on the cap. The prorated bonus would still apply from previous contract, or atleast count towards the cap, giving him the roster and workout bonus or put it in direct pay would still give Peppers a good payday and the cap number is within $20K of the cap savings by cutting him

    upload_2014-1-19_9-44-13.png

    Cutting Peppers and signing somebody like Bennett would probably result in a $6MM cap number for Bennett and
    Dead money for Peppers of $8.3MM or total cap hit of $14.3MM. Some debate here previously if Dead money can be spread over 2 yrs but I can not confirm that on the web but if so take $4.15 off total cap hit for 2 yrs and cap number this year is $10.15. If Peppers has anything left in the tank I am hopeful he will renegotiate a new contract for $5MM a year for 2 yrs and maybe some incentives ( 15 sacks) or something. This would give approx. $5MM in cap space this year and give flexibilty in the draft and signing of Free Agents. Melton and or Peanut could potentially be signed with this money.

    Hoping a solution can be found that helps both Peppers and team
  2. omc1969

    omc1969 Veteran

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    I'm hoping Peppers wants to retire as a Bear and that Emery and "Cap Guru" Cliff Stein can work out a restructuring deal that both parties can be happy with.
  3. Trackguy

    Trackguy Veteran

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    If he is a June 1 release, yes they can spread out the dead money (his prorated signing bonus) over two seasons.

    http://overthecap.com/explaining-the-june-1st-designation/
  4. BSBEARS

    BSBEARS Pro-Bowler

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    There ya go, after June 1 release cap hit is split to current yr and balance in following year. Still hope we can renegotiate and keep the dead money out of the books.
  5. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    There is also a provision whereby teams can designate up to two players for "post-June 1st" release while still releasing them anytime before. This benefits the player by cutting him earlier so he has a better chance of signing on somewhere else (before teams get too "capped out") and it benefits the team by allowing them to spread the dead cap cost over two years instead of 1. I believe it requires the team to account for the full dead cap cost up front UNTIL June 1 when half of it reverts back and then goes against the following year.

    I'd be quite surprised if the Bears didn't end up using this provision with Peppers. He would have to agree to a huge pay cut to justify keeping him cap-cost-wise. I doubt that happens. And it wouldn't be very consistent with Emery's stated goal to "get younger on defense" to keep an aging former star in decline at what would still be a large 2014 cap hit. It's better to bite the bullet, eat the dead cap (which still results in a net gain of $13m+ in space this year), and move forward. You could sign Bennett and draft a DE prospect for way less than $13m. Just cut him.
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  6. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    "Renegotiating" doesn't take the dead money off the books. The dead cap represents bonus money already paid to him. It's accounted for against the cap for 2014 and 2015 no matter whether he's here, somewhere else, or retired. The only question is whether its "live" cap cost (he's still on the roster) or "dead" cap cost (he's not on the roster). The only justification for keeping Peppers is IF he agrees to a large salary reduction such that his 2014 pay + the 2014 amortization of his prior bonus money (what would become "dead cap" if he was gone) is low enough that its appropriate for his expected level of production next year.

    IOW, he would have to take a large enough pay cut so that his total 2014 cap cost to the team is low enough to justify keeping him around. That's a very tall order when you look at the numbers and I don't see it happening.
  7. BSBEARS

    BSBEARS Pro-Bowler

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    Exactly, thats why Peppers would have to agree to being paid $5.5MM per year because he would still get the prorated bonus of $4.1MM bringing total cap with other bonuses to same as cap hit for cutting him. I do not like the idea of starting 2015 with another $4.1MM in dead cap because we cut Peppers and spread out his hit. Just looking at options and if we are going to try and get Bennet why not see if Peppers would work a deal and allow us time to draft a DE like Kory Ealy, or Tuitt or somebody to develop under his tutelage. Basically I am saying if Peppers takes the reduced pay to $5MM or so it may work out better to keep him if he will not take the pay cut then I agree, he needs to go as he is not worth his current $13MM base salary at this point in his career.

    Just my thought, not sure where Peppers stands on this and what he perceives his value to be at this point in his career. Surely he must realize he is not worth $13MM the big question is what is he willing to do and will he do it for the Bears or go to Tampa for $5 or $6MM. If he believes we can make a Super Bowl in the next 2 years he may go for it, otherwise he will probably chase the ring
  8. JustAnotherBearsFan99

    JustAnotherBearsFan99 Coordinator SuperFan DBS Writer

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    Do we want him back at any price? He had 7.5 sacks this year (he had 3 more sacks than the mighty Shea McClellan). He disappeared completely in games where we needed him. Stick a fork in him. He's done.
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  9. BSBEARS

    BSBEARS Pro-Bowler

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    Honestly I am undecided.

    With no D-Line help do to injuries not sure you can blame it on Peppers. Hard 2 do much when the whole offense is concentrating on one player. But I agree his numbers do not justify his huge salary
  10. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    I understand what you're proposing. Lets assume that Peppers is willing to take a huge pay cut to $5.5m as you suggest (I have my doubts he would but for the sake of hypothetical argument lets assume he is willing). That would mean the following:

    In 2014, Peppers would be paid $5.5m and would carry a cap hit of ~ $9.6m (5.5 + 4.1). The question then becomes, is he worth 9.6 at his age and following this season's huge dropoff? Remember that's $9.6m you can't spend elsewhere on FAs (ours or other's). I would argue he's not. $10 million is what you pay (cap wise) for an impact defender consistently playing at a high level. Peppers had a couple of big plays this year and 2-3 "quality games" that I can recall. He also had multiple games where he failed to register even a single stat. No sacks, no hurries, no batted balls, not even a single tackle. And he will be a year older next year. And consider that that still doesn't eradicate his $4.1m cap charge for 2015. We are paying the piper on that one no way to avoid it, unless you're expecting Peppers to have TWO good years left in him somehow.

    Unless I'm crazy wrong on something here, I can't see how the Bears can realistically justify keeping him. Emery almost HAS to sign a FA DE very quickly in March. I suspect that Peppers will be let go shortly after the ink is dry.
  11. BSBEARS

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    Good arguements> For the record I am not for or against just getting thoughts on if it could help the cap by restructuring. I tend to agree with you, just have not convinced myself we can do any better, time we spend money on Bennett or better DE at $6MM or more a year probably closer to $8MM for a difference maker + the dead cap of Peppers I was just wondering what the thoughts were.

    They seem to be get rid of PEPPERS NO MATTER WHAT.
  12. JustAnotherBearsFan99

    JustAnotherBearsFan99 Coordinator SuperFan DBS Writer

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    +1

    Early in the season someone mentioned on the messageboard here that it looked like he was taking plays off and giving a half-hearted effort. That made me angry at the time to read. I'm a huge Peppers fan, and even argued with folks here, defending the guy, and made excuses for his play. But then I started watching his play more closely and I realized the guy just couldn't get it done anymore. Worse, it did look like he was coasting out there in some games. I don't know why, but it sure looked like he was mailing it in, in some games. I understand a guy getting old, and his play dropping off. (can't help it if ya get old). I have no problem with that. But in Pep's case, it also looked like the guy was just going through the motions. I question his effort. Consequently, I honestly don't want him back at any price.
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2014
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  13. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    Whatever the reason ("mailing it in", age, no gas in the tank), there were so many times this season where the D needed to make a play--one good play--to win a game. Think StL, Minny, Washington, Green Bay, etc. and in not one of those times was Pep able to deliver like we have grown to expect. The only impact play he made all season was the takeaway-TD vs Pitt in week 3. That's pretty much it. Consider that David Bass, a 7th round rookie, equalled that and that should pretty much tell you all you need to know.
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  14. mdbearz

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    An older Peppers does not make the team better, you might argue that he takes the spot that might be filled by another player that can have more of an impact.

    So he actually hurts the team by coming back.
  15. Warlock

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    8 mil of Peppers' contract is inevitable (the prorated bonus), so the question is really...

    If Peppers' is willing to take the 8 mil pay-cut in salary (from 13.9 mil to 5.5 mil), do we want him back or do we want to spend that 5.5 mil on a younger player? Either choice means eating the prorated bonus.
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  16. jackiejokeman

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    Isnt Bennett from Seattle in play ? Does he have a brother on our team ?

    With the money saved from Peppers can we get Bennett ?
  17. Trackguy

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    I was going to post the same thing. The "dead money" is dead whether he gets cut or not. The question is if he is worth the hypothetical $5.5M. I say no. His decline this year was dramatic. How do we know he won't be even worse? I'm not sure his play THIS year was worth $5.5M (I'd have to see comparable players at that salary). Plus it's a big assumption he'd even agree to it. If the Bears cut him, there's a good chance someone will give him a two year deal worth more than that. And maybe a change of scenery would be good for him too.

    I'd rather eat the dead money (spread out over two years) and have more money to spend on younger players that will be a part of the team for the next 5 years.
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  18. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    I'm questioning, unless Sea doesn't want him back, why would Michael Bennett want to leave a team in the SB for a team that is no where near a SB?
  19. Ojibway Bob

    Ojibway Bob Veteran SuperFan

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    Well hopefully Sea wins the SB which would give Bennett a reason to leave for the Bears, to give his brother a SB with Chicago!!!!! Woot
  20. JustAnotherBearsFan99

    JustAnotherBearsFan99 Coordinator SuperFan DBS Writer

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    And also, why would he want to leave the #1 defense in the entire NFL to come to one of the worst defenses in the NFL? To play in Mel's "Tuckered Out Defense" instead of playing on a championship team that truly VALUES defense as well as offense? He'd be nuts to come here. I loved this brief article about the win yesterday in Seattle. The unit is everything we are NOT here in Chicago:

    "SEATTLE -- In the years to come, all that will linger in memories will be the dominance of the fourth quarter. When the Seattle Seahawks needed it most, their defense answered. Three critical drives by the San Francisco 49ers. Three takeaways by Seattle's proud and loud defense. With Sunday's NFC Championship Game on the line, the strength of Seattle's roster, the unit that has led the way all season long, stepped forth one more time and proved its worth.

    Without that flair for the dramatic, and a sense of exquisite timing, the Seahawks would not be Super Bowl-bound for the first time in eight years. They'd be staying home, not heading to New York for a turn on the game's grandest stage and a date with the dangerous Denver Broncos.

    "A good defense is always going to love those moments when you have to stop them, or you have to get them off the field to win the game," Seattle safety Earl Thomas said amid the celebration sparked by the Seahawks' 23-17 defeat of the 49ers at a raucous CenturyLink Field. "That's what we bank on. We always talk about how good we want to be, how we want to separate. That's how you separate." LINK

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