Jason Cole: Cam Newton’s Contract Situation Will Be Tricky
Jason Cole, from the National Football Post, wrote an intriguing piece about the 2011 first round draft picks, in which the Panthers took Cam Newton with the first pick. Because of the new CBA (2011 draft was the first one under the new labor deal), the lucrative contract extensions for many big-time young players may not be there, but the issue is limited to the first round picks and Jason discusses why Colin Kaepernick could be a major problem for the Panthers, and other issues with Mac and Jim.
On Colin Kaepernick: He’s very likely to get a contract extension this off-season and for a lot more money than Cam Newton could ever imagine he’s going to get on an extension over his next two years. It’s going to be a big beef for Cam, because of the leverage situation. Kaepernick is going to be more of a problem for the Panthers, than just ‘Hey, we’re doing it just like they’re doing it.’
On the contract differences between a first round draft pick (Cam) and a second round pick (Kaep) (starting in 2011): A second round pick has a four year max contract, with no fifth year option. A first round pick you have a four-year contract with a fifth year option. So with a second round pick, after four years, you can franchise them. With a first round pick, after four years, you can exercise the option, and then the following year franchise him and start that dance. It’s complicated, but its going to get a little ugly for a lot of first round picks and Cam will be interesting to watch.
On the Panthers giving Cam a big extension now: There are plenty of reasons to do it. You want to lock up the franchise quarterback, I’m not sure you want to do it, yet, but you want to make him feel like you want to do it. Then it’s up to his agent to explain to him (Cam) the numbers, which is if you’re expecting $50 million guaranteed, that’s not happening. Not today. If you wait a year, and you start to play up to the bigger numbers, then maybe you can get there. Unless the Panthers want to be extremely generous to prove a point to Cam this one’s going to linger for a year, because it pays the Panthers to wait and in some respects it pays for Cam to wait.
Jason also discusses the Greg Hardy situation, hold outs, and slotting Cam in among other quarterbacks.