General manager Marty Hurney and director of team administration Rob Rogers are two of the busiest people in the Carolina Panthers organization following the approval of a new 10-year collective bargaining agreement.
They must sign players to contracts and expand the roster to 90 players, a 10-player increase from the 80-player limit in years past at training camp.
That number is certain to include some of the 20 Panthers who can become free agents when the NFL's free agency signing period begins on Friday at 6 p.m. ET. Of those 20 players, 17 will be unrestricted free agents and three will be restricted free agents.
|UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS||RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS|
|S||Gerald Alexander||WR||David Clowney||Fifth|
|LB||James Anderson||LS||J.J. Jansen||Undrafted|
|LB||Abdul Hodge||LB||Jordan Senn||Undrafted|
|QB||Brian St. Pierre|
Unrestricted free agents have completed four or more accrued seasons and have an expired contract, while restricted free agents have completed three accrued seasons and have expired contracts. Restricted free agents have received qualifying offers and are subject to the first refusal/compensation system of the collective bargaining agreement.
Hurney and Rogers were allowed to begin contract negotiations on Tuesday with these players and the team's eight 2011 draft choices, as well as other NFL free agents. Monday night, they started negotiating with undrafted rookie free agents.
Rookies can be signed to contracts immediately, and veteran free agents can sign contracts Friday on or after 6 p.m.