Panthers sign Kuechly for $12.58 million over four years

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ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that the Carolina Panthers have signed rookie linebacker Luke Kuechly, the No. 9 overall pick in the draft, to a four-year, $12.58 million contract.

The deal is fully guaranteed.

Considered the most instinctive linebacker in the 2012 draft class, Kuechly was a tackling machine at Boston College and is athletic enough to play any of the three positions in Carolina’s 4-3 scheme. He is tentatively expected to man the middle of Ron Rivera’s defense, although Kuechly could also end up on the weak side.

The roles will be determined in training camp.

25 responses to “Panthers sign Kuechly for $12.58 million over four years

  1. Gotta love the new rookie contracts. Two years ago it would of been 30 mil over 4 years.

  2. Seemed like he was picked just a tade bit early. Hopefully for the Panthers sake he can play more like Greenway and less like the bust picked ahead of him, AJ Hawk.

  3. Maybe the owners knew what they were doing with that whole lock out business?? 3 million and some change for a hopeful 4 year starter? Sounds like a bargain to me.

    Per CJ Spiller – #9 to Buffalo in 2010 got a 5 year, 37 million dollar contract with 20.8 million guaranteed.

  4. @steelersaresuperiorineveryway6welookdownandlaugh

    “….Gotta love the new rookie contracts. Two years ago it would of been 30 mil over 4 years…..”

    Knowing what you know anecdotally(bc I’m sure you never played the game on any level with an opinion like this) how in the name of Jim Brown could you celebrate any Profesional football player getting paid less money, or having their market value artificially undercut by Billionaire owner on collective bargaining considering the often lifelong price these guys pay simply to entertain? With what we have learned, and continue to learn at a lightning rate it is a travesty that basketball, baseball, hockey and even soccer players receiving guaranteed contracts is the norm and they have far better retirement/insurance plans with their resective leagues.

    Besides , if you’re happy with he trajectory of your life why do you worry or criticize what another man earns for his/her sweat? You are happy with your life aren’t you?


  5. @espnfeedback

    I’m all in favor of players getting payed AFTER they prove themselves. I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling sick of seeing bust after bust snatching millions from the game.

    The new system keeps players from getting complacent and keeps them hungry. This way they feel they still have something to prove. Before they thought, “oh I just made 50 mil, I made it.” Not anymore. Just because you WERE a star doesn’t mean you are a star in this league.

    This also gives back to the vets that have given us their heart and soul for the past decade. Before this, owners and GMs were cutting guys like this to make room for the new rookies eating up the cap.

  6. @steelersareblahblahblah: Savor those 6 ring memories cause right now your steelers look like the third best team in the division under the Ravens & Bengals , yes the Bengals .

  7. steelersaresuperiorineveryway6welookdownandlaugh says:
    May 10, 2012 10:55 PM
    Oh, and 6 rings. Again.

    Congrats man, you earned them!

  8. Love it for the player and the system. As a fan of an AFC team, I’m generally not that concerned about the contracts in the NFC.

    But for all of the flaws in the new CBA, they got the rookie wage scale (mostly) right.

    Kuechly – a hell of a player and a Top 10 pick – gets a nice pay day of ~$3M / yr. for the next 4 yrs. guaranteed (per PFT), while some veteran(s) that have proven themselves also got paid – or will be paid in the near future.

    I’m not a socialist by any stretch, but at least that makes reasonable sense if you’re going to re-distibute the wealth (re-distribution being a given when fielding a full roster under a defined salary cap.)

    The kid gets some money that he “deserves” (w/ “deserves” being a whole different conversation). A veteran gets the addl. money, and everyone is well-paid. Hard to argue with this one small aspect of the new CBA.

    Congrats Kuechly on the contract. And since my team won’t face you twice every year and are in a completely different conference, I hope you find success in the NFL

  9. Interesting thing…first round picks can be signed for five years according to the new cba.

    I wonder which party was less committed…the Panthers or Luke?

  10. This kid is a beast and with the linebackers we have can’t wait to see Davis Beason Anderson and this kid it’s going to be nasty we just need one DT and we will be a top 15 D-Fence

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