For starters, the insinuations that Jerry Richardson doesn't want the team to be big players in free agency shouldn't surprise anyone. As a matter of fact, it should be cause for a sigh of relief. This is a notoriously bad free agent class, especially at the positions where the Panthers are hurting, namely WR, DT, and DE. Because of this, players that REALLY don't deserve the money (like Aaron Kampman) are going to get stupidly overpaid, and he's probably going to be able to use whatever contract Julius Peppers gets as leverage.
None of this means that Jerry Richardson is cheap, or that he's trying to sabotage the team for his NFL Illuminati gay sex friends, or that he's lost his mind. If you walked into a Wal-Mart and didn't buy anything because it was priced like a Burberry, no one except your children would call you cheap. They'd call you smart. Your kids would call you all sorts of names because they just want something new to get excited about.
Yes I'm calling those of you who scream crap like this children. Wipe your own asses you worthless little shits.
That said, lets look at how this team has done when its decided to pursue free agents. You can double check me here.
BIG NAME SIGNINGS
Ken Lucas - this is the first guy I'm putting as a big name free agent signing. Lucas was the biggest name available at his position in 2005, and was the first time the Panthers committed to a "big name corner." prior to him, it was a collection of assholes just running around and cherry picking wounded ducks after the panthers rushed 2 and got to the quarterback.
Ken Lucas was an interesting case. He was certainly worth the money they paid him in 2005, but he quickly fell off a cliff. He went from being really good and probably a pro bowl snub, to being okay, then to being dreadful in a 3 year span. Furthermore, he was hated in the locker room.
I would never have signed him in the first place, but I can't really call this a bust. He was a starting corner for four years, 2.5 of them pretty good.
Maake Kemo'eatu - 2006 was when the Panthers really went insane. Apparently deciding they hadn't been aggressive enough following 2003, they went out and got the two biggest names on the market.
Kemo'eatu is an interesting case. On one hand, he's was a consistent starter for three years, company guy, toed the line, never raised a peep. For all intents and purposes, he was decent player on the line.
However, he was hardly ever as advertised. Kemo's strength is never being pushed back, but he's equally unable to collapse the pile in. Whether or not he's being double or triple teamed, he's going to camp out in the middle of the line, collect his paycheck, and not move anything. That's okay, I guess, but not what you pay top dollar for. When he was signed, he was supposed to be a poo wrecker NT from Baltimore. Turns out he was just kinda a rock.
Lastly, he wasn't even difficult to replace with comparable productions. I know a bunch of you just poo the bed and are frothing at the mouth and probably look like this, but the second the Panthers signed Hollis Thomas' fat ass off the street, all the problems caused by Kemo's absence went away. The Panthers went right back to the way they usually are: good against the pass, okay against the run.
Mike Wahle - Wahle was a former pro bowler with the Green Bay Packers and came over here with much pomp and fanfare. He managed to scrounge up pro bowl birth (helped by legions of packer fans no doubt) then proceeded to literally disintegrate in front of our very eyes. in 2006 he could barely stand up straight. he finally ended his precipitous collapse in seattle where they still curse his name. four year contract for one year of production, and they still couldn't muster a thousand yard rusher when he was good.
If we could go back and do it again, I'd take a major pass on Kemo'eatu.
Jeff Hartwig - Utter and complete disaster. Got hurt and never recovered. Sucked when he was in. Unmitigated disaster. I love you Ryan Kalil do me.
Meshawn Johnson - The Panthers decided not to resign Muhsin Muhammad after the best season of his life because of keary colbert, and instead decided to give practically the exact same contract moose signed in detroit to an older, slower, less productive player the next year with a reputation for being a locker room cancer. Well, Keyshawn was old, slow, and a locker room cancer. The only thing memorable he did was get cut 20 minutes after delivering this gushing speech.
Landon Johnson - Believe it or not this guy was considered to be a stud linebacker just waiting to blow up. He'd had back to back hundred tackle seasons, and the consensus wavered between overpaid for a good back or underpaid for a steal. regardless, he was anticipated to do good things really quick, and was signed to a contract which is interestingly structured so that it's never really awful, but each time you look at it you're amazed he's getting that much.
Well, turns out the player every single panther fan wants to bench at the first opportunity (na'ill diggs) has been good enough to hold him off. Landon was a healthy scratch for a lot of 2008, and only saw intermittent spot duty in 2009. It certainly looks like he got his paycheck and decided to take it easy.
I guess you could call Ken Lucas a success, but that's really the only one I'd argue that was a big name that did well. The rest had middling success at best.
The Panthers excel with what I would like to consider shotgun free agent signings. Bring in as many people at the position as they can for nothing, throw them all against the wall, and see what sticks. They don't find Keydrick Vincent if they don't bring in every single interior lineman in the world and see which one sticks.
The other times the Panthers are amazing is when they go after reclamation projects. No one batted an eye when the Panthers signed former first round picks Brayton and Lewis, and now it's difficult to imagine the team without them. Not only are they VERY cost effective, but they outperform what they're being paid, and they WANT to be in Carolina. Tyler Brayton basically begged the team to resign him. Lewis seems happy as a clam.
this was going to be longer but I've finished my coffee (black because I'm not a pussy like you) and it's time to go to the gym to get swole and screw this hot trainer chick in the tanning booth room so I'll finish with this.
If you have a single iota of intelligence in your scrawny little natty lite shriveled brain you should be ecstatic that the Panthers aren't going to pursue big name free agents.
-there aren't many good ones that would immediately help the team and be clear upgrades.
-they're not good at doing it
Just because there's no salary cap doesn't mean everyone will act like it. I know this infuriates people who have no concept of money, but just because Richardson is richer than jews doesn't mean he's stupid with it. Very few people acquire that kind of wealth through luck (looking at you snyder) and aren't going to blow it all on Antonio Bryant. To put this into perspective for people who believe this is all part of Richardson's plan to relocate the Panthers to Nazi Germany, perennial nfl door mat and terribly run franchise Pittsburgh Steelers have said basically the exact same thing.
There is no one out there in free agency who'd be worth signing over extending the panthers' corp players. This is a simple concept and if you argue with me about it I will sneak into your house at night, pop a ton of ecstasy, tie you to your bed, put on a bunch of darude, and dance for several hours with glow sticks while flicking the lights on and off real fast.
Finally, free agency hasn't even started you dumb twats. save your bitching for after the Panthers OH MY GOD THEY DIDNT EVEN TRY TO GET RAY EDWARDS f**k YOOOOOOOOUUUUUUU FOX HURNEY AND RICHARDSON
now have some f**king pie
Edited by Fiz, 27 February 2010 - 03:12 PM.