A lot has to fall into place before Steve Smith gets out of Carolina, but there’s been plenty of chatter on the subject since the four-time Pro Bowler reportedly said he wants to be traded to the Chargers, Raiders or Ravens.
Although Panthers coach Ron Rivera was non-committal on the matter, NFL Network information man Jason La Canfora called it “hardly a foregone conclusion” Smith will be traded from a team trying to build its offense.
Ignoring his price tag and the stumbling block his contract represents, what type of receiver would a team be getting in Smith, who hasn’t had more than 70 receptions or 1,000 yards in two seasons?
“He is still a legitimate No.1 receiver with outstanding playmaking ability and deep speed,” NFL.com analyst Bucky Brooks noted during a recent live chat. “He can wear out a defense on quick, underneath routes or punish them for creeping up with long vertical strikes. (He still has) dynamic ability.”
— Frank Tadych