Steve Smith said on NFL Network’s Total Access that he doesn’t see how Burress could fit on the Panthers’ depth chart, which Smith believes already has the right mix of veterans and youngsters. Smith also said he supports coach Ron Rivera’s effort to build the team primarily through bringing in young talent, rather than aging stars.
“We’ve filled our chairs in the receivers room with already a lot of guys – young and older guys,” Smith said. “To bring in Plax [and] to let one of those guys go it wouldn’t be the coach Rivera way. The guys that are in there, they earned those chairs for right now and allowed them to go through training camp.”
Smith said he thinks highly of Burress and thinks it’s possible that Burress could help the Panthers if they lose receivers to injury, but at the moment Smith believes the Panthers have all the receivers they need, and adding Burress could stunt the growth of younger players.
“We have some guys that are trying to make their way into the starting lineup and have a bigger role,” Smith said. “Adding a guy like that would take away some of their development so I don’t really agree with it. Carolina has already come out and said they’re not interested right now, but he’s an exceptional wide receiver and can help a team. I just don’t think it’s the right fit for us right now.”
And it still remains to be seen whether any team thinks Burress is the right fit for its locker room.