Julius Peppers is turning slowly, but surly into a full-fledge knucklehead. About %99 of Packer fans would love to shower this guy will trainloads of cash to bolster the defense. I’m telling you…DON’T DO IT! Every week he’s giving me proof that he doesn’t know what the hell he’s doing.
1) 2007 - 2.5 sacks. 2008 – 14.5. I’ll give him a pass and chalk up 2007 as an off year. But scoring a career high during his contract year, hmmmmmm….
2) He wants nothing to do with Carolina, which seems like a pretty good situation. Went to college at UNC, the Panthers are a very solid organization, who finished 12-4 last year.
3) Immediately after the season, Peppers states his desire to play in a scheme that “showcases my talents,” I.E. play in a 3-4. Um, first off, I just mentioned he set a CAREER HIGH in sacks last year in a 4-3 defense. Second, he wants to be a 3-4 OLB and put up James Harrison/DeMarcus Ware sack numbers. That’s fine…if he wasn’t 6’7”, 290 pounds! Everyone says Kampman needs to shed 10-12 pounds for the shift to OLB. AK is 6-4, 265.
4) Today, he listed a mere 4 teams he would agree to join via trade. This isn’t baseball, NFL players don’t have no-trade clauses. Even if they did, why only give 4? Trading in the NFL seems hard enough (it rarely happens), why make it even harder?
5) Dallas is one of his desirables, the other 3 are unnamed. Why would you would want to join the Barnum and Bailey Circus in Dallas – I have no idea.
This was all summed up pretty well by CNNSI’s Don Banks a few weeks ago:
"We saw in 2007 how Peppers can drop off the radar screen when it comes to impact, and I don't think Carolina will take the chance there's either a protracted holdout coming or any repeat of his 2½-sack output of two years ago.
Peppers is an undeniable talent, but he can be maddeningly streaky, and now he says he wants to play in a 3-4 rather than a 4-3 defense (which some theorize is just posturing aimed at increasing his marketability). And even more puzzling, Peppers is making noise about playing outside linebacker in a 3-4 to best utilize his pass-rush skills. But outside linebackers aren't usually 285-290 pounds, are they?
Plenty of teams will come after Peppers hard -- maybe Denver or Seattle -- but I say buyer beware on this one. Something about Peppers' story just doesn't sit well."
In fact, Scout.com lists him as the 21st (yup 21st) most desirable free agent.
Buyer Beware, indeed.