This team might not be in the mix

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Some thought they would be a major suitor for him . . .

But it doesn’t look that way.

Talking about free agent QB Derek Carr and the QB-needy Carolina Panthers.

I thought, and others in the business as well, thought the Panthers would be perfect for Carr.

But, upon further review, maybe not.

Digging around on this, what I found out is that Carr’s asking price is way above what the Panthers are looking to spend on a QB.

Or at least willing to spend on him.

ESPN’s Diana Russini announced last week that Carr is looking for $35 million a year.

Last week, Reich was asked if the Panthers would be interested inhosting Carr for a visit, like the New Orleans Saints and New York Jets.

Reich said it was a “really interesting question,” adding that he wasn’t prepared to answer that.

He talked about his desire to meet with QB coach Josh McCown to go over their options at QB moving forward.

But talking to somebody down there, I get the sense that they think Carr’s asking price is kind of profligate and don’t want to go there.

Let’s take a step back people and just think about this for a minute.

A QB, who has a 63-79 record as a starter in nine NFL seasons, and has never won a division, wants $35 million a year?

What is going on here?

Just let that sink in.

Look, I’m not saying Carr can’t help certain teams, but $35 million a year for a QB with that record?

As Bill Parcells always said, “You are what your record says it is.”

Last off-season, free agent QB Andy Dalton, with a lifetime record of 77-69-2 at the time, signed a one-year deal for $3 million with New Orleans

He ended up going 6-8 as a starter. Carr was 6-9 last year, and made a lot more, having signed a 3-year, $121.5 million deal last off-season. He was cut after the season, so the Raiders were just on the hook for $24.9 guaranteed money the way the deal was structured.

The idea of Carr getting $35 million a year seems flat-out weird to me.

Who would do that?

Once again, I’m not against a team signing Carr, but for maybe, what, $15-20 million per?

What am I missing here?

Maybe nothing, because Reich and Panther GM Scott Fitterer seem to agree.

Not a bad player, but $35 million-a-year?

The Las Vegas Raider benched him with two games left in the season, so they wouldn’t have to guarantee any future money due to an injury, and they released him after the season.

And keep in mind, they released him with no clear replacement in the building under contract.

They released him and just wandered into QB no man’s land.

What does that tell you?

Let me go back to Dalton for a second, and I’m still wondering what the big difference is between Dalton and Carr, and I’m not saying the Jets should sign Dalton, just comparing those two players abilities.

In 2021, Dalton signed a one-year deal for $10 million with Chicago. If you are really honest about Carr’s body of work, isn’t that the kind of deal, in a sane world, he should merit?

I know Carr’s going to make more than that, but $35 million for a QB with a 63-79 record?

You could see why the Panthers seem to be willing to sit on the sidelines, at least until the asking price comes down.

Look, if you told me the Jets signed Carr to a one-year deal for $20 million with incentives, I’d say fine.

But $35 million-a-year.

Sit back and think about that for a second considering his wildly inconsistent body of work.

February 27, 2023

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Dan Leberfeld
Dan Leberfeld
Publisher of Jets Confidential Magazine. Call 1-800-932-4557 (M-F, 12-4) to subscribe. Co-host of Press Coverage every Saturday on SiriusXM NFL Radio from 11-2.

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