The questions about Jimmy Clausen during the build-up to the draft were less about his arm strength, and more about his ability to lead men.
Clausen has struggled mightily on the field, like many rookie quarterbacks. Based on some comments from wide receiver Steve Smith, Clausen also may be struggling with how to command respect from veterans around him.
After Carolina’s 31-10 loss to the Falcons, Clausen sought out linebacker Jon Beason to apologize for his poor play. Smith was asked what he thought of the matter:
“I’m the last guy to tell anybody to be apologizing, but if you’re going to apologize, you know, you should apologize to the people in the huddle with you,” Smith said via Steve Reed of CarolinaGrowl.com. “He ain’t at Notre Dame anymore, that’s for sure.”
Sensing he said too much, Smith ended his session with the Panthers media right there. Clausen was later asked about Smith’s comments.
“I didn’t hear Steve say that, so I can’t comment on something that he didn’t say to me,” Clausen said.
UPDATE: Here’s video of Smith’s talk.