The Panthers have been talking with defensive end Greg Hardy and his representatives about possibly getting a long-term deal done with Hardy before the start of the season, according to a league source.
Hardy, coming off a breakthrough season in 2012, is set to make $1.35 million this season in the final year of his rookie deal.
Drew Rosenhaus, Hardy's agent, approached Panthers' officials about a contract extension during the spring. At the time, first-year general manager Dave Gettleman was working to get the Panthers' salary cap situation under control.
Gettleman inherited a roster that was $16 million over the cap when he was hired in January. The Panthers currently are about $12 million below the cap.
After finishing with seven sacks total his first two seasons, Hardy had 11 in 2012. He added 23 quarterback pressures and two forced fumbles.
Hardy, 25, a sixth-round pick from Ole Miss in 2010, teamed with defensive end Charles Johnson for 23.5 sacks last season, the second-highest total by a pass-rushing tandem in team history.
If they fail to reach an agreement on a long-term deal with Hardy, the Panthers could use the franchise tag to keep him. The tag for defensive ends cost teams $11.2 million this year.
The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all, but do keep it civil. Please refrain from profanity, obscenity, spam, name-calling or attacking others for their views.
Have a news tip? You can send it to a local news editor; email email@example.com to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Charlotte Observer.Read moreRead less