On Friday, the Carolina Panthers will start their three-day minicamp with all but one player on the roster. Who?
You guessed it, disgruntled defensive end Julius Peppers has made it perfectly clear that he will sit out the mandatory three-day minicamp, as he is still not set on returning to the Panthers in 2009.
After the 2008 season, Peppers had publicly stated that he had no desire to return in 2009 as a Carolina Panther and has since refused to sign his franchise tender, while also making it known that if a trade to a team he specifies is not worked out, he will also sit out the entire 2009 campaign.
While there were some stirrings and rumors that the New England Patriots might be among the teams interested in trading for Peppers, no team has officially expressed genuine interest in the disgruntled defensive end.
Panthers GM Marty Hurney wouldn't comment on the Peppers' situation other than to say he has had ongoing "positive conversations" with Peppers' agent Carl Carey and he still believes the four-time Pro Bowler will play for the Panthers in 2009. Should Peppers decide to play, he will make well over $1 million per game.
“We feel like Julius had done everything he can do for us over the past seven years and we feel confident that he will do that again,” Hurney said. “But it’s all part of the process.”
Carey has not returned any text or voice messages.
Aside from Julius Peppers sitting out, defensive tackle Damione Lewis and linebacker Jon Beason are also among the handful of veteran players who will not participate in all drills, as they are returning from off-season surgery.
Quotes cited from Carolinagrowl.com