The Carolina Panthers put together one of the most surprising yet fierce defenses in the NFL last season, but one of the cornerstones on the defense may be playing somewhere else in 2014. Greg Hardy, aka The Kraken, is a free agent and played his way into a monster deal that the Panthers may not be able to pay.
According to Charlotte Observer reporter Joseph Person, the Panther may have to literally release the Kraken due to impending deals with other major stars on the team.
With huge deals on the horizon for quarterback Cam Newton and middle linebacker Luke Kuechly, and potentially defensive tackle Star Lotulelei, the Panthers can’t afford to have a ton of money tied up in two pass rushers.
The Panthers could slap the franchise tag on Hardy but that’s likely to be something that throws the numbers off in the future. A long-term deal at the type of money Hardy will get in free agency isn’t really an option for the Panthers and it’s looking more and more like the Kraken will be released on the NFL in a way other fans and general managers will appreciate more so than the way he was released during the season.