Roughly thirty minutes into the free agency period, the agent who represents defensive end Julius Peppers told Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times that a contract with Peppers is the Bears’ “deal to lose.”
And now we know why Carl Carey is the Tom Hagen of NFL agents — he handles only one client.
If there was any doubt regarding the question of whether the Bears had been talking to Carey about Peppers before the period for talking to Carey about Peppers began, there should be none now. There’s no way Carey came to the conclusion that it’s anyone’s “deal to lose” in 30 minutes if there were no communications before midnight.
Let’s be clear on this. Carey has done nothing wrong by talking to teams prematurely; agents are allowed to instigate tampering. But he needs to be discreet, or he’s going to talk the Bears right into losing a draft pick or two.
And there’s more evidence of pre-midnight discussions. Lance Zierlein, who had Peppers signing with the Redskins on Thursday night (we’ll give him a pass since he nailed Haynesworth last year), reports that Bears coach Lovie Smith flew to Peppers on Thursday night. They’re flying back to Chicago together on Friday.
Zierlein also says via Twitter than the Bears will get Peppers signed tomorrow.
So stay tuned. This one is moving quickly.