Panthers ink Gross to six year deal

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Thursday Feb. 19, 2009

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- The Carolina Panthers have signed All-Pro left tackle Jordan Gross to a six-year deal, paving the way for the team to place the franchise tag on defensive end Julius Peppers.

Terms of the deal were not immediately available, but Gross is expected to become one of the NFL's highest-paid offensive lineman. The agreement Thursday ends more than a year of negotiations and removes a big obstacle in their efforts to deal with Peppers.

The four-time Pro Bowl pick has said he wants to play elsewhere next season and would request a trade if the Panthers placed the restrictive franchise tag on him. The Panthers had yet to announce their decision on Peppers.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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