Good riddance, Josh Norman

Andrew Lubbers, Sports editor

To the shock of the rest of NFL, the Carolina Panthers rescinded the Franchise Tag  placed on All-Pro cornerback Josh Norman on Wednesday, April 20 after he failed to report to voluntary off-season workouts. The Panthers made the right decision letting Norman walk, even though the league views him as arguably the top corner in the game.  

Holdouts provide distractions in training camp and can lead to rough starts to the season. Look no further than Kam Chancellor, who held out through an 0-2 start before finally returning to a Seattle lineup that never truly found its NFC Champion form of the prior year. No team coming off the best season in franchise history wants a lingering distraction in the locker room and on the field.

Reports also stated that Norman and the Panthers could not come close to negotiating a long-term deal, defeating the purpose of paying him $13,952,000 for one more year of service.
Nobody can discount Norman’s stellar 2015 season as he intercepted four passes and practically shut down top receivers such as Dez Bryant, DeAndre Hopkins, and Julio Jones. But the Panthers possess a championship-caliber team that they would like to keep together, and paying Josh Norman “Revis money” (five years, 70 million dollars) would prevent them from resigning multiple reliable assets in the future.

Carolina will attempt to replace Norman through the draft or by developing young players and evaluating them during the pre-season. This simply speeds up the developmental process as the Panthers would have found themselves in the same position next year if they kept Norman.

The Panthers made the smart choice by cutting Norman in April as it will make headlines now, but certainly blow over by the time the season begins. This eliminates the future locker room tension and unwanted media coverage that a holdout comes with and allows Carolina to simply focus on preparing the team for another Super Bowl run.

Did the Panthers make a mistake in rescinding Josh Norman's Franchise Tag?

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