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Instant Analysis: Jonathan Stewart Re-signs with Carolina

The long and storied saga of Jonathan Stewart and his dynasty value took another turn yesterday as the Panthers signed Stewart to a new five year deal worth $36.5 million with $22.5 million of that being guaranteed. Carolina obviously sees the value Stewart brings to the table – after all, he’s posted 3,500 rushing yards and 26 touchdowns as a part time player in his four year career with the Panthers. This deal comes on the heels of them signing DeAngelo Williams last Summer to a deal with $21 million guaranteed money – that’s a whole lot of cash to shell out for one position on a football team.

So, now what should we expect?

Most dynasty owners were hoping Stewart would play out his contract this season and explore free agency at the end of the year. After all, he has elite RB1 talent and just needs a team willing to ride him like a true workhorse. Some even hoped the Broncos would be Stewart’s ultimate destination since John Fox is now their Head Coach and has always loved Stewart’s ability. That’s all in the past now as we know where Stewart will certainly be spending the bulk of his career.

The key to Stewart’s value is once again tied to DeAngelo Williams. Last Summer, the two were expected to be split up as Williams flirted with the Broncos and Dolphins before ultimately returning to Carolina to sign his mega-deal. The good news for Stewart’s owners is that the guaranteed money in Williams contract is up after this season. It’s quite possible the Panthers could cut bait with Williams after the year or ask him to restructure his deal. However, that’s no sure thing, regardless of what you’re reading today. Cutting Williams after the year would cost the Panthers over $4 million dollars and his base salary isn’t much more than that.

With Stewart, this is the latest move that clouds his future value. This is no death blow, though. He’s still a very serviceable player as a RB2 and would elevate quickly to a RB1 if Williams ever gets hurt or moves along. At some point, it’s bound to happen as Williams is now 29 years old and will be 30 before next season. The biggest concern dynasty owners should really have is the fact that Cam Newton is going to be around to take a lot of the rushing touchdowns away in Carolina.

From a dynasty perspective, this is no time to move Stewart. With this news, he won’t get you any more in return and it’s quite possible you’d be selling low. At best, you’d be selling at market value. Remember, he’s still just 25 years old. The best part of this entire scenario of Stewart re-signing is that we’re finally going to get a resolution on his value. Unfortunately, that’s going to come next Summer when the Panthers decide if they want to keep Williams and Stewart together for even longer.

Owners are simply forced to wait to see if anything changes. Again.

Ken Kelly
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Coach
10 years ago

How in the hell does this guy get more money than Arian Foster? Stewart has been nothing more than a disappointment. I agreed to trade MJD for Williams and Stewart and a draft pick a few years ago… I’m thanking my lucky stars that the other owner backed out.

VoiceofUnreason
Reply to  Ken Kelly
10 years ago

The panthers have almost a hundred million invested in Stewart and Williams. Imagine what they could have done with it. Good players but what a waste.

BRonIsBoss
10 years ago

I was wondering if y’all were going to drop this. The J Stew cult on this site is unreal. I made a move to get him right after the deal, hoping to buy low but the other owner is still on the bandwagon it seems. No matter how much you love him though this lowers his value because it lowers his ceiling, even if his floor remains untouched.

Ray Voeller
10 years ago

When D Will turns 35 and Stew turns 30 I am curious if this site will still be waiting on him to be THE MAN in Carolina.

alden bietz
10 years ago

Last year Newton stole most of the rushing TDs. Even when Carolina has a good backfield, Newton needs to become a team leader as a QB if they are going to start winning games. Currently RBs in Carolina arnt worth much fanasy value because of the RB commitie and QB status as of now.

Mark
10 years ago

If it does anything to his value it is a slight downgrade. DeAngelo Williams guaranteed money is up this year but if the panthers cut him next year they’d take a 4 million plus cap hit. With that said next year or the year after Williams is done. We were already waiting until next year so worst case scenario he has another year of low end RB2 value. If DeAngelo stays in CAR next year Stewart will continue to win more and more carries as Williams fades with Stewart still in his prime. Those who can’t get him for bottom dollar are just pissed off. I’m an owner and I’d sell him, but not for anything different than I would have 2 days ago. If someone offered me high end RB2 value or low end RB1 value I’d trade him, but no one is going to do that because he is still a headache to own.

witdog67
10 years ago

NEWS FLASH: Stewart owners, life isn’t fair 🙁

I hate to pile on, but IF & when Deangelo leaves, they WILL be bringing in another guy to help carry the load. High draft pick? Michael Bush type? It will be somebody. That’s the RBBC reality of the NFL.

Mark
Reply to  witdog67
10 years ago

Bringing in a michael bush type doesn’t make any sense. Stewart has the running style and strength for short yardage carries that don’t already go to Newton. I’m not holding out hope for top 5 numbers, but if they bring in a change of pace back when Williams leaves he will put up low end RB1 numbers. Unless they draft well they won’t put that much money into another running back again, unless they’re crazier than they are. Other than Foster, AP, lynch and maybe another guy or two they’re all in committees now. I’ll be happy with the top 10 talent in an RBBC situation in 2 years. He can put up RB1 or high end RB2 numbers at that point. I don’t think anyone has him as their RB1 right now, they were just hopeful he could become one. Owning a high end RB2 low end RB1 is nothing to be upset about.

Andr3w
Reply to  Mark
10 years ago

They already brought in a Michael Bush-type in Mike Tolbert. I know they say he is a fullback, but he is a good 3rd down guy, catches well, is good in pass protection and runs well inside the 20s. Sounds a lot like Bush to me…

SJ
Reply to  Mark
10 years ago

No offense Mark but you sound like one of those Stewart lifers who lost touch with reality in CAR a bit.

Dont let anyone fool you.. this signing is a bad sign for Stewarts fantasy value. Very bad sign.

Where as he could one day become a legit Workhorse RB1 on another team, another coaching staff that doesnt like to go RBBC so vehemently, he is now stuck in a quagmire of RBBC crazy coaches and GM’s in CAR.

His sleeper one-day-carry-the-load-back value is gone. Long gone. CAR will never, never give him a full dose of touches per week. Sure maybe some games here or there like always, and maybe if Williams goes down. But when your QB is just a good a runner as any in the league, stealing RB TD’s annually.. I’ll pass and let someone else pay for that nonexistent upside.

nzkoston
Reply to  SJ
10 years ago

I dont know how you can say he’ll NEVER be given a full load of touches. Hes 25. You still have guys like Fred Jackson or McGahee out there who were/are being given a full load of carries at age 30 or whatever. It could be a very different situation 2 years from now.

Mark
Reply to  SJ
10 years ago

You didn’t read what I read completely, didn’t understand it or I didn’t explain it well enough.

I’m not saying he will be a 25 carry a game guy. I’m saying he will be, at some point, a 15-20 carry a game guy. In this day and age that’s about as good as it gets. I have Foster as my RB1 and don’t need AP like numbers from Stewart. Those guys are so rare in the current NFL and getting more rare by the year that having Stewart as my RB2 will be a strength in 1-2 years unlike what he has been lately.

Tolbert won’t take many third down carries from Stewart. Stewart is already a 3rd down back. Why bring in a less talented guy (Tolbert) on third down? That would be illogical. If anything his committee mate in the future will be a scat back type like Sproles. Stewart runs guys over, he isn’t as elusive and they could use a Rodgers (ATL) type guy when Williams is gone to complement the run game.

I lost hope of Carolina using Stewart as a primary, work horse, one man backfield when they resigned Williams, not with this signing. This signing just says to me that they realize how talented he is, he stays on a dangerous, prolific offense that can focus solely on stopping him (like Cleveland for instance).

Staying in Carolina for the long haul isn’t as good as going to a place where he would have that opportunity, but being traded doesn’t guarantee a better situation.

I’ll give credit for the Newton stealing TD’s argument, that is painful to watch. With that said he got chances last year and didn’t capitalize. I think with Williams gone he will get more goal line chances and Cam won’t likely repeat those TD numbers.

I didn’t draft him as my RB1. When Williams is gone he will be a tremendous strength for my team at RB2 or flex. Nothing about the new signing changes that.

Sensei John Kreese
10 years ago

We ready to move cj spiller up draft boards yet? : D

Sensei John Kreese
Reply to  Sensei John Kreese
10 years ago

Emoticon fail

wheelholder
10 years ago

what type of value does having both the panther backs have,,, as of now they are my third backs, with the other two being the houston pairing and the other being the dallas trio,,, just wondering if its time to move the carolina pairing or be happy i got both

wheelholder
Reply to  Ken Kelly
10 years ago

point taken on the roster space,,, still need to know kind of value the two of them together have.

Ken
10 years ago

now that he is signed long term would that make him easier to trade?

Cyrus Miller
10 years ago

Not easier to trade because the signing bonuses would count against the cap hit. So, Carolina will not be trading Stewart anytime soon.

My take on it is this… Stewart will never be the top 5 guy that he “could have been.” I’ve accepted this. But I think he can still be pretty good.

Look at what DeAngelo did while splitting time a few years ago. I think that as the team gets better (and defense improves, with Beason and Kuechly), Carolina will pass less often and run more. Yes, Newton will steal several goal line carries. Yes, DeAngelo is there to poach carries.

However, I think Stewart can be highly productive with 10-20 carries a week and Newton getting the goal line carries. Those TD’s would be a nice bonus, but I don’t think they will be necessary for Stewart to be a viable RB2.

And there is always the thought that Newton won’t want to take the tough carries to avoid the risk of injury. I think he will still get 4-8 TD’s a year, but 10+ won’t happen very often.

Paul
10 years ago

Lol DLF experts overall dynasty rankings are 52, 39, and 30. Add a one in front and you’d be closer. Do we forget how often this guy is hurt? The reason Carolina signed both of them long run is because BOTH J-Stew and D-Will get hurt when they run either of them gets full-time duty. There’s NO upside here.

Paul
Reply to  Paul
10 years ago

Correction. They both get hurt when either one individually gets full-time duty.

Cyrus Miller
Reply to  Paul
10 years ago

You haven’t looked at how many games Stewart has missed, clearly.

Do that and come back and fix your argument.

Paul
Reply to  Cyrus Miller
10 years ago

Games missed is still better than two carries for six yards on your team.

Cyrus Miller
Reply to  Paul
10 years ago

Has he ever done that?

Once again, go look at his stats and injuries and if you see any correlation, let me know.

Otherwise, fix your argument.

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