Sports

Julius Peppers re-signs with Panthers for one more season

Julius Peppers re-signs with Panthers for one more season

As the number four all-time sack leader in National Football League history with 154.5, this next season gives Peppers the shot to advance into the top three ahead of former Panther Kevin Greene, who was able to amass 160.

A person familiar with the situation says the deal is for $5 million, with $2.5 million guaranteed. He played four years with the Chicago Bears and three years with the Green Bay Packers.

Julius Peppers will play in 2018.

Peppers is coming off of his tenth season with 10 or more sacks, in a career in which he has made under seven sacks only once.

The Panthers lost unrestricted free agent defensive tackle Star Lotulelei to Buffalo on Wednesday after he signed a five-year deal with the Bills.

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Peppers, the No. 2 overall choice in the 2002 draft, re-joins a defensive end rotation that also includes Mario Addison and Wes Horton.

The Panthers were judicious with Peppers' practice reps last season, and it's expected he will again be given the flexibility to essentially set his own schedule.

Peppers had shoulder surgery on February 8 after playing most of the 2017 season with a brace on his right shoulder. The nine-time Pro Bowler has played in 160 consecutive games, the second-longest current streak among defensive players. He now needs just six sacks to pass Kevin Greene and move into third place all-time. Peppers also forced two fumbles and recovered two fumbles, despite playing with a labrum injury that required surgery after the season. His 11 career interceptions rank second all-time for defensive ends. He spent eight seasons with the Panthers helping them reach Super Bowl XXXVIII before signing with the Chicago Bears in 2010.

Smith played one season with former Panthers wide receiver Steve Smith in Baltimore and said he's like a "legit big brother I can talk to about anything".