Two days before the NFL Draft and teams such as the Carolina Panthers are making some investment securities by exercising their fifth-year player option with Star Lotulelei and getting Kawann Short back to the negotiating table to avoid another Josh Norman-like scenario wherein teams are quick to knock on the player’s doors.
Panthers’ general manager Dave Gettleman told Charlotte Observer that he is impressed by the increase in the numbers that Lotulelei has put up every season and stressed that the defensive tackle has earned the need increase in his contract, which would be more than $6 million in 2017 under the contract.
“He’s done everything we wanted. Star has not disappointed by any stretch of the imagination and he’s getting better. He’s earned this. I’m excited we’re going to have him around for two more years,” Gettleman explained.
The 26-year old Tongan national was drafted by the Panthers during the 2013 Draft and was picked 14th overall in the first round. Prior to his NFL stint, he played college football at the University of Utah and shared the Morris Trophy for the best lineman in the Pac-12 Conference.
Now while Lotulelei is getting the paycheck he deserves, the Panthers are now also discussing on how to get Kawann Short to stay with them as he has one more year left on his rookie contract. It won’t be an easy and cheap least to say.
The Panthers are working on to strengthening their roster after losing Josh Norman to free agency, though it is still not clear why the Panthers rescinded his contract after placing a franchise tag on him. Gettleman just told the media that discussion with Norman went sour as the corner back was asking too much for him to re-sign with the team.
Short was the 44th picked by the Panthers also during the 2013 NFL Draft since he is a second round pick, the Panthers does not have any protection on him, but the Panthers are working on a suitable contract extension for him that would have him stay. Short has a total of 124 tackles, 16 sacks, five force fumbles and five fumble recoveries.
Photo Courtesy: Keith Allison/Flickr