Thursday, March 4, 2010

PANTHERS CUT DELHOMME, LEWIS

As the witching hour strikes, the NFL is without a salary cap, and the Carolina Panthers are without their fixture at the QB post. Jake Delhomme was cut by the team late Thursday night, according to several media outlets. The Panthers would not confirm the reports, but anticipate some dialogue with them on Friday.

It's economics, mostly. In the case of Lewis, it's about money. Sadly, for Jake, it's money and performance. Delhomme struggled in 2009, with 18 interceptions, and going 4-7 in 11 games. By comparison, the apparently now heir-apparent Matt Moore went 4-1 in 5 games. It was a year that Delhomme would love to have back, and forget all at once.

Still, the money factors in as well. The Panthers still owe him nearly $13 million dollars in contract guarantees, $10 million of that would have come in a lump sum roster bonus next month. Now, the $13M can be paid out over 3 years, thus saving them a little money.
Those are the facts. Personally, I hate this move. From the football standpoint, I understand why. Bottom line, the Panthers have undergone more than a makeover here. This is a complete facelift. A new QB, a new spokesman for the defensive line (Damione Lewis was one of the guys that met the media no matter what, and that will be missed from my perspective), and a team that could have more new faces in play when it's all said and done.

There is no mistaking that this uncertain time in the NFL is about to makeover several teams, and the way they go about their business. Keep in mind, the non-salary cap goes both ways for owners. There is also no salary floor (something I learned from ESPN's Trey Wingo a while back). Teams do NOT have a minimum to spend on their rosters as they did while the cap was in play. Watching how teams spend their dimes will be the key to determining who might be trying to buy up top players for a title run, and those that are waiting to see how the new collective bargaining agreement takes shape--if it takes shape at all to avoid a lockout of the 2011 season.

So to review, the Panthers will have a new starting QB in 2010, what appears to be a completely new defensive front line (with Lewis cut, Julius Peppers gone to free agency, Tyler Brayton's return uncertain, and Hollis Thomas also unrestricted), and they could be thin at cornerback if Richard Marshall gets a long term deal the Panthers decide not to match.

Buckle up, kids. This ride is about to get a little bit bumpy.

Mike Solarte

Follow me on Twitter! twitter.com/MikeSolarte

4 comments:

Ryan said...

I'm glad jake is gone! They need to get rid of Fox as well and then just maybe we can win a super bowl! I don't know what took so long in the first place to cut him! They need to be trying to get
Michael Vick here! You get Vick here we will go and We WILL WIN THE SUPER BOWL!

ronnie said...

no vick here please.trouble maker.Lost what he had while in prison,don`t need no bill cowher neither,just another george seifert. Fox ok now hes seperated from his hero delhomme.

Ryan said...

How is Vick a trouble maker? I mean he did wrong and was punished and now he has been forgiven and can play ball! So why can't he play ball in Carolina! We need a Super Bowl Ring ASAP! Its the same thing when we were younger! You got in trouble you were punished and then you were forgiven and continued on with your life! But yeah I agree with you no Bill Cowher! But Fox coaches to soft and doesn't take any risk! We need someone who is really to gamble on some downs and not always play it safe! I hope they get rid of Steve Smith too he is not a team player! But I'm open to see what Mr. Richardson has up his sleeve! All I'm asking for is that we get a Panther mascot symbol in the middle of the BOA field instead of that stupid NFL sign I hate that!

ronnie said...

Give vick time,he`ll show hisself again.