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Grading Michael Oher's Contract Extension with Carolina Panthers

The Carolina Panthers were able to agree to a three-year contract extension with starting left tackle Michael Oher. Brandon Croce breaks down the contract extension and hands out his grade for the move.

For this contract extension agreed on by Michael Oher and the Carolina Panthers, we will be breaking the move down into four categories. Each category is worth up to 25 points and a final grade will be handed out based on the total score. These are the definitions of each category:

Player- How has the player produced to this point in his career? Where does he rank among other players at his position?

Team Fit- How does he fit within the offensive or defensive scheme?

Team Need- Is this position a weak spot on the roster? Does this move strengthen the position?

Contract- Is this a reasonable contract based on production? Did the team over spend or did they get a steal?


Grade: 20 out of 25

Michael Oher was the focal point of the book turned movie, "The Blindside". The big tackle is a tremendous story and after playing well at Ole Miss, was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens with the 23rd overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft.

While with the Ravens, Oher jumped back and forth between right and left tackle but saw his performance drop after his rookie season. However, he did start for the team, at right tackle, during their run to a Lombardi Trophy in the 2012-2013 season.

The Ravens decided to not bring back the tackle after his rookie contract expired and Oher signed a four-year contract with the Tennessee Titans. However he only played one season with the team and the Titans released him after the 2014 season.

The Panthers were willing to take a chance and signed him to a two-year deal and he went on to start every game this past season at left tackle.

Team Fit

Grade: 20 out of 25

This is something that could be debated in terms of Oher's fit with this offense. There is no question that Oher helped bring stability to the position after a season with Byron Bell at left tackle.

Oher did an excellent job protecting Cam Newton in the pocket however he struggled run blocking last year. This is something that could potentially be a concern considering the Panthers' offense relies so heavily on the run game.

Team Need

Grade: 25 out of 25

The Panthers have been in desperate need of finding the long-term answer at left tackle. This upcoming season will be the first time since 2013 that the Panthers have the same player starting at the position.

After the retirement of Jordan Gross, the Panthers game Byron Bell a chance to start but he was not able to rise to the challenge and this was why they had interest in Oher last year.

The fact that the Panthers are now able to have consistency at not only left tackle, but the entire offensive line, should help this group play even better in 2016.


Grade: 25 out of 25

In this article, I went into detail about where Oher's contract ranks among the other left tackles in the league. The average salary and guaranteed dollar amounts are in the bottom half of the NFL and this is a great deal for the Panthers.

The team did offer him a three-year extension worth over $21 million however only nine million of that is guaranteed. This should potentially mean that if Oher struggles before the end of his contract, the team should be able to release him with minimal penalties.

Final Grade

Grade: 90 out of 100

This is an excellent move for the Panthers, as well as Michael Oher. The Panthers now have a left tackle that they can rely on for the next couple of seasons. This is something they have been searching for since Gross' retirement.

Meanwhile, Oher is now expected to be the team's left tackle and this will be the first time that a team has committed to him being their starting left tackle in his career. The fact that he has bounced back and forth could have attributed to his struggles towards the end of contract with the Ravens.

Twitter @BrandonCroce.

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