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Panthers won't franchise defensive end

Updated: February 23, 2010, 5:35 PM ET
Associated Press

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Julius Peppers grew up in North Carolina, starred in college in the state and made five Pro Bowls in eight years with the Carolina Panthers.

Now, after a decision based on finances, Peppers is almost certainly leaving home and about to be the test case for how much NFL teams are willing to spend on an elite player in a season without a salary cap.

General manager Marty Hurney announced Tuesday the Panthers won't place the restrictive franchise tag on the team's career ...

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