So What's The Book On Peppers?..............

Discussion in 'Chicago Bears' started by soulman, Mar 1, 2014.

  1. soulman

    soulman Pro-Bowler SuperFan DBS Writer

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    Where's your money at on the outcome of this one? I can see three possible scenarios coming.

    1) Pep accepts a major reduction is his salary to somewhere around the $5 mil Seattle signed Michael Bennett for last year. That takes his cap hit down by about $9 mil and allows Emery the cap space he needs to bring back at least some of his vet DLineman. No matter how good Pep can be the Bears can't afford an $18 mil cap hit.

    2) Pep declines and any restructure without a major reduction in salary just delays the inevitable and increases the potential dead cap space next year. The recovery of the cap space gained by releasing him is too great to ignore so Emery designates him for a June 1st release (gains $14 mil in cap space) and allows him to begin to negotiate with other teams.

    3) Emery has enough cap space for now to do what he plans, or he can restructure other deals, and he decides to wait on Pep leaving their proposal on the table hoping that after his agent sounds some teams out about their interest Pep will decide to accept his proposal and cut his salary. I guess they could also release him and try to re-sign him for less but if they do my guess is he'll head for Lovie down in TB.

    So what's the consensus of others around here? Of all of the moves Emery has to make this one has the biggest price tag attached to it and yet if there was any way to keep Pep he'd sure like to do it and eliminate the need to come up with another RDE who can do what Pep can.
  2. a_miljan

    a_miljan Veteran

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    first of all, we (i) miss u man, i know its offseason and everything but nevertheless... i would say, in what s likely to happen: 2, 1, 3
  3. JustAnotherBearsFan99

    JustAnotherBearsFan99 Coordinator SuperFan DBS Writer

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    I went back and rewatched the games from last season. I don't claim to understand the reason for Pep's precipitous dropoff in play, but it was a huge drop. I may be completely off base on this, but it looked like he wasn't giving much effort in a number of games. That's a pretty serious thing to contemplate, because Pep has been my #1 favorite player for years now. You hate to think the guy was loafing. But if you watch the games, I do question his effort. If that's the case, then maybe he doesn't want to be here anymore. Or, maybe he doesn't want to play now - maybe his heart just isn't in it anymore. Either way, I don't think we should pay anything to bring him back, even if he'd take a pay cut, if he delivers an "effort cut" in return. Better to move on. That's my 2-cents worth. The Bears may see it differently than I do, so my opinion probably isn't worth much :-)
  4. BearJim

    BearJim Veteran SuperFan DBS Writer

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    I just don't see him taking a huge pay cut & I don't see us keeping him around @ 18M so logic tells me #2 senerio. Now, if he was willing to take a pay cut, healthy, ready & able to bust his ass on every play then I like #1. Last year he was either not happy, not healthy, not able, or some of all three to consistently play at a high level.Glad to see ya posting again Soul.
  5. The Benjamin

    The Benjamin George Halas Staff Member

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    I think he is good as cut, unless you can talk him into taking a cut all the way down to what his walking away money is if he is cut.

    Then it is win win. You get a player to play for the bare minimum you would be paying if you cut him.
  6. BSBEARS

    BSBEARS Pro-Bowler

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    Depends on what he will take. If he will renegotiate for 5 or 6 million a yr. I would keep him. We still free up $10mm or so and solve a DE Need and allows us to sign an additional DE Wootton or another potential FA.
  7. The Benjamin

    The Benjamin George Halas Staff Member

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    What is his walk away money? What does he leave with, what do the Bears need to pay to make him go away? What is the bare minimum the Bears will have to pay to replace him with a serviceable replacement.
  8. BSBEARS

    BSBEARS Pro-Bowler

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    What is his walk away money? What does he leave with, what do the Bears need to pay to make him go away? What is the bare minimum the Bears will have to pay to replace him with a serviceable replacement.

    Somebody like Bennett probably around 8 million a yr. Which we could do with the savings and have a dual threat at each end. You wont find a DE for 5MM that is a threat, so I guess the question is why would Peppers take it. He wont if he does not believe his skills are on the decline and wants to stay with the Bears. Basically whatever we extend a contract to is what it will cost. The dead money does not change from previous prorated bonus. Maybe he will take a 2 yr deal, and we can get the bonus value (4.2 million over next 2 yrs) or if we cut him dead money value. He still has value, the question is how much?

    From over the cap salary cap calculator. first is if we do nothing. I updated hayden and Garza so total cap room should be more accurate then reported in other places

    upload_2014-3-1_12-22-36.png

    NOW LETS SAY WE RESIGN HIM FOR 6 MILLION A YR 2 YRS.

    upload_2014-3-1_12-26-29.png

    Total cap increase approx. 8 million. Now lets say we cut him post june 1 _ dead money spread over 2 yrs
    upload_2014-3-1_12-29-0.png

    Thats pretty much are options:kickas167bd:
  9. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    First of all, Soul, glad you're back and don't be such a stranger. Great discussion post...need these things to get through the long painful offseason lol.

    Re: Peppers, my first emotional reaction as the season ended was to walk away from him. Whether age or effort related, he had a down year and he's hugely expensive as of right now as you pointed out. But in thinking about it more, I've come around to hoping Emery can pull off a #1 or #3 type scenario. Pep is the only DE we have under contract who's remotely starting caliber and I'm not even sure they will bring Wootton back. I wonder how much of Pep's disappointing performance last year was due to the rest of the DL sucking so badly and him packing it in a bit as the defense as a whole came completely unglued starting about week 5 or so.

    It's painfully obvious that the DL needs a major re-tooling. Looking at OUR players, outside FAs likely available, and what the draft seems to offer (esp in the 1st), it appears to me that there is way more options at DT than there is at DE. Correct me if I'm wrong on that. But I don't see Bennett leaving Seattle, Hardy isn't going anywhere, Allen is old, we have nothing else but Corey who's a FA himself, and the first round of the draft looks way deeper at DT than DE as far as value there goes. On the interior, Ratliff and Collins could be retained cheaply, Melton is a possibility (I wouldn't reach too far here), Linval Joseph may hit FA, and the 1st round has definite possibilities (Donald, Jernigan, Nix, maybe Hageman).

    Bottom line, Phil has plenty of cap space options to make it possible to keep Pep and not break the bank. I won't go into them but there's way more space potentially there than most realize depending on how aggressive you want to be. If you get Pep back on salary reduction like you mentioned (maybe add in some incentive $ for pro bowl appearance, double digit sacks, staying active 16 games, etc to mollify him), I think you do it.
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  10. JustAnotherBearsFan99

    JustAnotherBearsFan99 Coordinator SuperFan DBS Writer

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    If the guy is just going through the motions now, and loafing through most of the season's games, do we want to pay ANYTHING for that kind of effort? It just irritates me to think about how we worry about scrimping and saving at other positions, and then we pay significant money to Pep who really isn't any better than Shea at this point in his career. We could use that money in a number of other places - for guys who actually WILL play well. The money could better help the team win, if spent elsewhere.
  11. mdbearz

    mdbearz Veteran

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    I remember when we got him initially there was a couple people from Carolina that came on the other board and said that he seemed to simply disappear in for games at a time.

    Well, I would say until last year that was complete hogwash. Well, it seems like he disappeared for about 15 games last year and I'm not sure at his age, and his cost that there is really any way that I want him back.
  12. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    JABF, I fully agree that Pep had a disappointing season that was well below what we have come to expect from him. We can debate the reason(s) why that was till the cows come home (age? effort?) but admit that he had ZERO help on the DL after about week 3. He was the only competent DL we had out there the entire rest of the season especially since Paea was out or hobbled by injury an awful lot (at least until Ratliff got going very late). Peppers, even 2103 Peppers, is light years better a DE than Shea, its not even close. Shea was a massive liability against the run (notice how every opponent ran right at him and away from Pep every week). Shea also generated little pass rush other than one game in GB when he got a couple garbage sacks. Peppers wasn't his usual great by any means but he was by far the better overall rusher.

    Who do want to spend the money on in FA to replace him at RDE? There's no draft replacement there in the first except Clowney who doesn't have a snowballs chance in hell of making it out of the top 5. Just picking your brain here. I understand the valid motivations to walk away from Pep, not disputing their existence, just wondering what the alternatives are. We have ZERO starting DEs on the roster if they cut JP.
  13. a_miljan

    a_miljan Veteran

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    exactly, ive been saying that from midseason, im dissapointed in him, a whole lot
  14. BSBEARS

    BSBEARS Pro-Bowler

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    So what is everyones plan that does not want Peppers. Its easy to say sign a Bennett but how much is that gonna really cost. 8 million in dead money.. I know 4 million a yr. yeah its 8 million in dead money and 8 million for Bennett who may or may not get the 10 sacks Peppers will get. So now we spent 16 million and replaced Peppers with hopefully somebody who is equal. Oh yeah we still need CB, DT, SS, FS, ILB, Another starting DE, back up QB, back up DT, Back up safeties. Not sure home many CB's we got now but may need more than one of them also. So somebody explain to me how cutting Peppers rather than restructuring accomplishes all of those needs. Keep track of your cap spending while your at it.
  15. JustAnotherBearsFan99

    JustAnotherBearsFan99 Coordinator SuperFan DBS Writer

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    All good points regarding the predicament we're in. Early in the season I came unglued here and defended Peppers play to the people who dared to insinuate the guy was dogging it out there. I couldn't fathom that he was taking games off. We're not talking about taking PLAYS off, but entire GAMES off.

    But then I went back and watched his play more closely and had to admit the Julius Peppers we'd seen play for the Bears in past years - just wasn't on our team anymore.

    How much do you pay for this present version of Julius Peppers?

    I'm not saying we're going to draft a "pre-2013 Peppers" to replace the guy. But we can draft a guy who will play day-1, better than the 2013 version of Peppers. And he will cost a ton less. We will have opportunities to spend that money that we save at other positions of need. Yes, I get it that we're in bad shape on defense (an understatement for sure). But that's where we find ourselves now. It's a damned shame the team was allowed to get to this point.
  16. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    Fair enough.

    We will know a lot about the Peppers situation after FA starts here soon. He's under contract, a way too big one, but under contract nevertheless. He's not going anywhere until/unless the Bears release him. So, Emery has two choices as far as I can see. He's either chances that he can keep him at a tolerable renegotiated cap number or he must sign a FA DE. The Bears can't go into the draft with zero starting DEs on the roster. Either way (Pep or a FA), they will have to draft one in rounds 2-3 to be the LDE and/or bring Wootton back.

    If he signs a FA, Pep is 95% cut IMO. If he doesn't, he probably stays somehow. It's no secret that DE and SS are Emery's two biggest needs in FA. He's gonna have to pull off another Bennett/Bushrod gambit in 10 days.
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  17. Ojibway Bob

    Ojibway Bob Veteran SuperFan

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    It would be nice if we draft a great D stud and if a Peppers contract could be restructured that the drafted stud could rotate with Peppers and learn a few tricks. Hell it would be nice if Peppers could retire a Bear but it seems highly unlikely. The kind of pressure that would be placed on a Ealy, Donald, Nix or whoever we draft could be too much for a rookie to "Bear" hahha I make a pun
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  18. 4dabers

    4dabers Veteran DBS Writer

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    Time to cut.
    I knew this time would come when we signed him for that ridiculous contract. We way overpaid and robbed Peter (the future) to pay Paul (past). The only way Lovies Defense could work was with Pro-Bowlers all around, and He and Angelo were willing to pay, knowing that they would not likely have to live with the end problems.

    Don't get me wrong, Pep was a stud for us the first few years, but he was NEVER worth the money he got paid with this contract. Last year he was a disappointment, but he really didn't have a great year in 2012 either.

    Time to cut ties and move on. With some addition restructuring, the Bears could have over $40 mil in Cap space and could have plenty to sign a couple of key peices on D to go along with a solid draft.
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  19. JustAnotherBearsFan99

    JustAnotherBearsFan99 Coordinator SuperFan DBS Writer

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    Here's a reality check. Pep's cap hit is over $18 million dollars this coming season. His cap hit is over $20 million dollars the next season. It is utter madness to spend that kind of money on a guy loafing through the season. His cap hit is going to cost over $2,000,000.00 per sack based on last year's production (he had 7.5 sacks).

    Per sack!!!

    Stop the madness. It's time to chunk him out the door. We can do better, and spend a lot less. And we need that money now for players who can play. Pep can't anymore. Here's his contract info LINK.
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2014
  20. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    Here's another reality check:

    WE HAVE ZERO STARTING DE'S ON THE ROSTER OUTSIDE OF PEP!

    And please don't say Bass or CornWash LMAO. We have NOTHING. NOTHING!!!

    I am well aware of all the negatives involved in the current Peppers contract situation and I sympathize with the idea of not overpaying an aging former star. I got it. We all know that. Just saying you need a replacement in hand before you burn any bridges. If Emery can sign a quality starting RDE (a REAL DE, not a depth guy) in two weeks then I'm sure Peppers will be cut in a New York minute. Until then, he's not going anywhere.
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2014

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