Chicago Sun-Times

Buyer beware of Peppers

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Not everybody is enamored with Julius Peppers, who will be by far the biggest prize on the diluted free-agent market.

Albert R. Breer of the Boston Globe reports that several NFL insiders wonder if Peppers is worth the $13 million per year he may fetch on the free-agent market because he disappears for long stretches.

"I wouldn't touch him," an ex-Panthers personnel man was quoted as saying in the Globe's Sunday edition. "On the field, he's a freak athletically, but it's whether he shows up or not. He'll go two and three games and do nothing but take up space. Then he'll have two sacks, a forced fumble, a pick, and change the game."

According to an AFC scout, Peppers "could end up costing some personnel guy his job...If you pay this guy, I don't think you'll see a double-digit sack [season] again the rest of his career."

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I wouldn't put to much stock into what an ex-Panthers personnel guy say's, or an ex-anyone else for that matter. Sounds like sour grapes to me.

As far as Peppers not doing anything for a couple games and then showing up in others, theres a lot that goes into that. Example, there could be certain games where Pepper's job would be to simply contain the passer, its in certain game plans. At the end of the day the stats aren't pretty, but its whats called for in certain schemes. Also, level of competition, Peppers probably picks up a double team in every game, if he's going against a really good tackle, plus taking a double team, his numbers are gonna be down for that particular game. Also, Pepper's picks up a double team (oh yeah I already said that), but my point is this, a good season for any DE is around 12-15 sacks, thats not even one sack a game. Theres not an end out there that can get one sack a game, if that were the case every end in the league would avg 16 sacks a game, thats not very realistic. Every end in the league will go a couple games and not have a sack or even a tackle for that matter, with the exception of certain players who are having a career year. But again, no player does it year in and year out. This sounds like nit picking on Pepper's to me.

Bottom line is this, the Bears need some blue chip talent on their front if they want their scheme to work, especially at DE. Chicago's front is missing an edge rusher, I still think Peppers is the guy they need. Pepper's and Tommie Harris could be a dominate combo for Chicago. Chicago's front four is probably one good player away for the fact they were ninth in the league with 24 sacks generated from their front four. I say pay Peppers, this defensive scheme starts up front, having some talent up front is the only way Lovie's scheme is ever gonna work GO BEARS!!

I dont really agree with the headline you posted on this one Neil, as we can not take any stock at all into what any NFL personnel man says about any Free Agents just before teams are trying to bid on these guys, the Team that wants him will send out smoke, about his age/health/attitude etc.... to scare off other teams.

We HAVE got to get a top DE on this team. We have had this position and the safety position be our `Achilles heel' for way too many years. (not QB Jerry as Orton could have managed that position if you would have addressed the other positions) - These 2 positions are extremely important for our team to win and win big but yet these 2 positions are the worst areas (besides OL) that Jerry has tried in vain to address.
So....Buy Peppers and quit fartin around Jerry! dang we will be looking for a Top DE again next year if he doesnt do something.
Peppers is so much better than the guys we have tried to `develope' for years its laughable!

oh yeah, they were showing DE last night on NFL channel, and a top DE will beat his single team quite often, (as they showed) and therefore draw the blitz help towards him away from the other Defensive Line positions.

hmmm how long has it been since the bears had a top DE??? Please someone name that DE that regularly beat his OL on the bears?

anyone since Dent???

13 million..??? why would Peppers go for 13 when he can stay here in Charlotte & collect 20 mil. Is he worth it.?? Good matter of opinion..admit he does seemingly disappear sometimes..but it does make you wonder ..shouldnt he be able to beat these dbl teams & other blockers..I suppose maybe so ..also true he is used for other purposes during the that will possibily cut down on his stats..It is of course a matter of $$$ we here wish to pay Pepp 20 mil..?? esp when we could use that money for a free agent to boost other parts of the team..We have a kid we drafted last year (cost us a 1st round pik this year) he could be our defensive end in place of Pep. Remains to be seen..but We believe we have a good team now. a couple of spots do need addressing...will keeping Pep make us better or worse..?? According to what we know here Pep has not spoken with management nor have they spoken with him...should know more perhpas by end of this week...GO PANTHERS!!!!!

Kevin you just said no End can get 16 sacks in a season. Freeney did it in 04, and had 13.5 this year with only 9 games started. John Abraham did it in 08. Richard Dent, he played for the Bears, he did it twice. Strahan did it twice. It may surprise you that 49 players have gotten 16 or more sacks in a season. White did it 3 times. 7 Players have cracked 20. 4 of them were ends.

Peppers is a career 2 gap player, he is past the 30 mark, and has always been a selfish player. How long do you think he is going to play well for? You know what? Forget it, he isn't even on their radar anyway, you all know they want Kampman. Nothing like the old injury discount to get Angelo fired up. If his knee is healthy it would be a good play. However I don't think the Bears are out to spend money, they are hoping to find an unkown or a stop gap type player.


I always enjoy your posts as they are usually insightful and fun to read.

I'm unsure as to your comment regarding Peppers' stats (or lack thereof) due to scheme. If it's true that he may not put up the numbers he should be b/c he's supposed to be on containment duties during certain games, then I would have to call for a head examination of John Fox and company. Peppers is arguably the most gifted athlete ever to play the position...why in the world would anyone call for him to simply contain? How many scrambling QB's have the Panthers faced besides Michael Vick?? I just don't see it as a viable argument.

Although I lay awake at night thinking about the possibility of Peppers in a Bears #90 jersey, I also have to take into account that he just may not want to be the dominant player he ultimately could be (or should have been).

Guys Peppers costs way too much $$$$$$ to bring in with our other needs, two good options are Kampman-obvious, and Derrick Burgess who is more of a Lovie smith end, and who has not worked out well in New England, plus they have problems with Wilfork's contract and might have to give up someone to keep him happy there....Burgess played well in Oakland and still can help a team, he's quick off the edge and has a mean streak, I think we might have something with him on the field opposite "Big Paw"Brown, with a healthy Tommy Harris up the gut......Go BEARS 10' Playoffs or Bust!

Art it is obvious that you dont understand the business aspect of football. The reason he will take a deal for 13 million a year is because it will be a multi-year deal with somewhere around 40 million guaranteed. What happens if he stays and collects his 20 million for this year and blows out his knee? There goes his chance for a long term deal. I promise you he will not be in Carolina next year but hopefully he will not be in a Bears uniform because he is too old to command that much $$$

Randy & Kevin,

Peppers is well known around the league for taking plays and games off and being a malcontent. What this former personnel guys said is not news, it's old hat. Too bad we can't put Kampman's attitude in Peppers's body, that would be perfect. Either one is a risk, for different reasons. But you don't build championship teams with malcontents who take games off and otherwise have bad attitudes, and guys like Peppers almost never change. On the other hand, you can test a player's body, to some extent, to see if he's recovered from an injury. So I'd rather go with Kampman if that's the only option.

The real problem here is that the Bears are a lousy organization that has let the lines deteriorate badly since 2006. They shouldn't be in this position in the first place, and now they will have to take a chance in order to get someone who might help.

10.5 sacks? Ill take that `bad' attitude vs the `good' attitudes of the bears ppoor DE any day.

2002 12
2003 7
2004 11
2005 10.5
2006 13
2007 2.5 (that year he declined a major salary increase saying he didnt do enough! bad attitude??? I think Not.
2008 14.5
2009 10.5

Geez he seems to be getting better not worse with age people, and this doesnt figure his assist sacks!! AND his tackles. And the tackles/int/sacks his teammates had cause he was disrupting the play.
oh yeah right we couldnt use someone with that `bad' attitude could we? Lets just keep plugging in the holes in ouir lineup with cheap labor that has `good' attitudes, and keep looosing bears football intact. Geez yous guys want a SB team but you dont want to pay the players it takes to get there? Sounds like Jerrys/Teds/McCaskeys plan as well huh?

Creighton, either your really stupid, or you didn't read my post close enough? I'll assume the latter.

Creighton, the only thing I said about 16 sacks was that if every DE in the league was expected to get at least 1 sack a game, they would all AVG 16 sacks a game. Where are you getting I said no end in the league has ever gotten 16 sacks? Again, I said AVG 16 sacks a season.

Also Creighton, what is this Pepper's is a career 2-gap s#it? Panthers head coach John Fox's preferred style on defense relies on getting a rush with only your front four and playing in a two-deep zone much of the time, like in Chicago. And Creighton, do you know who the Panthers d-coordinator is? Why its Ron Meeks, you know, the guy who use to work for Tony Dungy, the guy who runs the same type of scheme as in Chicago? So how do you figure Pepper's wouldn't fit in Chicago's scheme their smart guy?? Oh well, GO BEARS!!

Guys, I am a Carolina Panthers fan who is not bitter at Peppers and would have liked him to resign (back in 07 when we offered to pay him more than he'll make in this screwed up market). But, he has always been a very inconsistent, on and off player. When he went down with injury late last season the panthers defense really wasn't too badly effected.

Is he really good? Yes. And you should be excited at the idea of signing him, but don't think you are without risk bringing him in, and don't think he is Reggie White or Michael Strahan ect. He is a very good player, but that is all he will ever be, and truth be told he doesn't have the heart or passion to be anything further.

Dear God, of course you bring in Julius Peppers if you can! The guy is a genetic freak. Who cares what the price is, would you rather use the $$$ for Peppers or for the Bears to spend on contract extensions for "invaluable core players" like Harris/Hester/Urlacher?

Also, this thing about "buyer beware" is freakin' moronic. Show me one player in the league who is perfect. You can say bad things about anyone. Here watch:

Peyton Manning is a choker! He can't perform in big games!

Ditto Donovan McNabb!

Chris Johnson won't go over 2,000 next season. Hell, I don't even know if he'll get half of that with the number of touches he had this year.

Randy Moss is not what he used to be.

Larry Fitzgerald won't be a threat without Warner throwing him the ball.

Adrian Peterson has lost a step already.

Blah blah blah...Peppers is a star player. Slap his name on the back of a Bears jersey and put him on the field.

Kevin Agree on your second post. Peppers is a good fit for the Lovie 2 system. The coaches he has worked with has been from the origanal Tampa 2 system. No doubt if the Bears were interested in signing him I wouldnt be opposed.

Second Kevin way to go and bring it to Creighton. Not only did you post him up but you posterized him.

I think Because Brando and a couple of others havent been trolling around on this board since Brad left he is a very sad and lonley man. He has nobody else to play with Kevin so kinda give him a little pitty he isnt stupid, Creighton is just not suited for the outside world and this is probably the clossest he will get to public interaction.

CatchYa Later Man.....

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This page contains a single entry by Neil Hayes published on February 22, 2010 9:48 AM.

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