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Panthers trying to drum up a trade for Steve Smith

Steve Smith AP

Usually one of the last things a team does before cutting a guy they plan to cut anyway is give everyone one last chance.

That appears to be the case with the Panthers, as Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network says they’re attempting to trade the veteran wide receiver. With a $7 million cap hit, that seems unlikely.

It’s been clear that new General Manager Dave Gettleman wasn’t comfortable with Smith at his current price, and Smith wasn’t comfortable with the way it was handled.

But this wasn’t solely about money, as the Panthers are shifting the leadership of the team away from the old guard (Smith and retired tackle Jordan Gross) and onto quarterback Cam Newton and linebacker Luke Kuechly.

It’s a risky play for a team that entered today with one proven wide receiver on the roster, and now goes into free agency with the possibility of none, and little in the way of cap room to replace him.

Smith was obviously in decline in terms of impact on the field, but as the franchise’s best player, it’s still a clumsy handling for what appear to be his final days with the team that drafted him in 2001.

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68 Responses to “Panthers trying to drum up a trade for Steve Smith”
  1. elmerbrownelmerbrown says: Mar 10, 2014 5:10 PM

    He would be a perfect for Eli and the NY GIANTS please get him !

  2. andreboy1 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:11 PM

    Such a dumb idea.

    Right when you QB finally shows growth you get rid of his biggest weapon and team leader. Smith still has serious game.

    Have fun going 8-8 next year.

  3. chinahand11 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:12 PM

    Too bad, but that’s life in the business world. I’m not crazy about this guy, but I hope he lands somewhere. He can still make a team better.

  4. Norseman says: Mar 10, 2014 5:13 PM

    Over 30 = pay cut or cut.

    Unless you’re a franchise QB.

    Them’s the rules.

  5. dublindemonszfl says: Mar 10, 2014 5:15 PM

    Good luck with that one. Not gonna happen. They will cut him and teams can get him for free, less a contract.

  6. mrlaloosh says: Mar 10, 2014 5:15 PM

    As much as I dislike Steve Smith the Panthers showed how classless they really are. This guy is the only real football player they have ever had. Except, of course, Jake Delhomme.

  7. ajgreenhof says: Mar 10, 2014 5:16 PM

    This is a head scratcher.

  8. whatjusthapped says: Mar 10, 2014 5:16 PM

    Steve Smith will likely punch the Security Guard on his way out the door. $7 Mil is a lot to pay for this Punk Tactics and limited production.

  9. pftsheriff says: Mar 10, 2014 5:18 PM

    Smith has lost a step, this would be a good move coupled with a signing of nicks. Probably no takers, he’ s not worth the seven million

  10. dolphinfan17 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:18 PM

    Wow. If he gets traded the panthers will never be the same……… To me at least

  11. 33vikes says: Mar 10, 2014 5:18 PM

    Good player. Timing is everything. Tomorrow, you can get him for nothing.

  12. thepftpoet says: Mar 10, 2014 5:18 PM

    If Steve Smith leaves, the Panthers won’t have one competent receiver on the whole team.

    And no, Ted Ginn cannot be referred to as competent.

  13. jgedgar70 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:22 PM

    I would love to know what is between Gettleman’s ears that is telling him to trash the ENTIRE wide receiver corps from last year. Whatever his plan is, it had better be damn good, especially since it apparently does not include Smith.

  14. patriotsarespygaters says: Mar 10, 2014 5:22 PM

    haha ice up son!!! u bout to be traded

  15. captainspangled says: Mar 10, 2014 5:22 PM

    Hall of Famer. Deserves better.

  16. axespray says: Mar 10, 2014 5:23 PM

    meanwhile two half backs that haven’t done squat since 08 are still making big bucks.

  17. realnflmaster says: Mar 10, 2014 5:23 PM

    He’s begging to be A JET!

  18. strokinmyego says: Mar 10, 2014 5:24 PM

    Steve Smith is the greatest Panther in the history of the franchise and it isn’t even close. That being said, there is no loyalty in the NFL and eventually every player has their day when the money they are earning no longer matches the level of their play.

    Tough decisions like this are part of being an NFL GM. Gettleman looks like a guy that is willing to deal with public backlash if it means his team is going to be better off in the long run.

  19. nfl4days says: Mar 10, 2014 5:25 PM

    Wouldn’t be surprised to see them take a receiver in the 1st and 2nd round.

  20. plum13sec says: Mar 10, 2014 5:26 PM

    The end of an era in Carolina

  21. rushbacker says: Mar 10, 2014 5:27 PM

    Man, I would love to see this guy re-united with Fox and Adam Gase in Denver. We need some nastiness in the worst way, and Smith is as tough as it gets.

  22. discountdoublecheck says: Mar 10, 2014 5:27 PM

    How exactly is this at all head scratching? He’s going on 35, is injury prone and costs too much. Sorry but it’s the nature of the business. I don’t quite get how this makes the panthers classless either. He’ll still be in their ring of honor one day. But if he’s unwilling to take a pay cut when clearly he isn’t the same player he once was…they have every right to cut him.

  23. my1voice57 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:31 PM

    I have no idea whether this is true or not but if it is then it’s a sad day for the Panther’s franchise. I suppose that if we had another truly reliable, up-in-coming, go-to, WR alternative on the team then maybe I’d feel differently. BUT WE DON’T!!! I believe that the proper way to handle this would have been to inform the veteran WR about not being able to make him any promises from the very beginning. Or request that Steve restructure his contract, keep him on for at least one more year so that they could have a veteran/leader on the team to work with the future WR’s and have Steve work the slot. I will never be convinced that Dave Gettleman and Coach Ron handled this situation correctly and although it’s a business. It is a rare business that almost yearly wants employees to take pay cuts, no matter how well they have played/worked or in most instances, because they have played/worked too well.

  24. hrmlss says: Mar 10, 2014 5:33 PM

    Hmmm, old receiver, temperamental, likes to pummel teammates, and overpaid. Now taking Bids.

  25. Patskrieg dot com says: Mar 10, 2014 5:35 PM

    I don’t care where it is, I just want him on the same team as Aqib Talib. The hated rivals to buddy comedy partners story arc is ready and waiting.

  26. outlawtrn1999 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:35 PM

    Welcome to Washington.

  27. mikecarter1135 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:41 PM

    Not loyalty Steve Smith probably one of the best to every play for the Panthers. And they treat him like this, at least release him and give him the opportunity to go to a contender.

  28. cannonballdookie says: Mar 10, 2014 5:43 PM

    Bad idea, he’s still their top wr and deserves 7m, just look at what happened when flacco lost Boldin. Cam isn’t good enough yet to turn average players into studs and he needs help even with Smith on the roster.
    Please get rid of a rb first.

  29. dvdman123 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:47 PM

    Heck paying $7 million to a 35 year Jerry Rice would be too much so why is anyone puzzled by this move? You can get 3 good to above avg. young WRs for that kind of money.

  30. kingmj4891 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:48 PM

    All this proves is that last year was a complete fluke and everyone was right that Rivera and Gentleman are not NFL HC and GM material.

  31. blacknole08 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:48 PM

    Why would we trade our best offensive weapon (other than Cam)? Add Hakeem Nicks and we have a formidable offense.

  32. cplat2010 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:49 PM

    Not playing up to 7 million at this point in career, but he is the face of franchise get something worked out. If he refuses cut him, but at least he sees it coming.

  33. eaglesw00t says: Mar 10, 2014 5:51 PM

    Lol he is about 40. Who is going to trade anything for a tiny receiver that is waaay past his prime? Just release him and allow him the ability to hit FA before teams spend their cash. Give him that courtesy at least for a stellar career

  34. robataille says: Mar 10, 2014 5:51 PM

    Trading away their #1, #2, and #3 receiver…. DUMB!!

  35. believeland2014 says: Mar 10, 2014 5:51 PM

    LOL Panthers are dumb

  36. chargrz says: Mar 10, 2014 5:59 PM

    Put a fork in him. He’s done!

  37. thestrategyexpert says: Mar 10, 2014 6:00 PM

    This is what I suggested many times in the past but the team foolishly waited too long.

  38. erikthredd says: Mar 10, 2014 6:01 PM

    He’d fit in perfect with Brady in NE.

  39. seatownballers says: Mar 10, 2014 6:02 PM

    Why not cut the under performing backs

  40. theclink12 says: Mar 10, 2014 6:09 PM

    “Ice up, Son”

    Time to pack.

  41. Dogsweat says: Mar 10, 2014 6:11 PM

    San Francisco bound.

  42. bensstinkyfingers says: Mar 10, 2014 6:12 PM

    Even Lars Ulrich from Metallica douldn’t drum up a deal for this guy he’s washed up. Someone might sign him if he gets released, but doubt draft picks would be given for him. Maybe they can tal to browns for weeden / smith straight deal.

  43. jetsjetsjetsnow says: Mar 10, 2014 6:15 PM

    Dumb move. These GMs try to get too cute. They should keep him for one more year. I guess Cam will be throwing to himself this year..

  44. fdugrad says: Mar 10, 2014 6:16 PM

    Well, if nothing happens in a timely fashion, Steve can step up and BEAT that drum to get the attention of other teams.

  45. apkyletexas says: Mar 10, 2014 6:16 PM

    He can play for my Steelers any day. We’d finally have a decent replacement for Hines Ward.

  46. brettfavresmidget says: Mar 10, 2014 6:20 PM

    I’d take him on my side….in a street fight.

  47. texansfalcons says: Mar 10, 2014 6:24 PM

    Can’t see Smith in anything but a Panthers jersey. But if he won’t take a pay cut, I hope he finds a good contender to play for. It would be funny to see him in a different NFC South jersey. All the best to him.

  48. jacobk621 says: Mar 10, 2014 6:36 PM

    Rae Carruth !!!!!

  49. realfootballfan says: Mar 10, 2014 6:40 PM

    I don’t know if I would be running to cut Smith at that moderate salary when you have those RBs chewing up a big chunk of the salary cap that doesn’t fit their production, particularly Williams. Also, even with his lost step, who exactly is supposed to be catching balls from Newton next year? Just a head shaking move.

  50. schmitty2 says: Mar 10, 2014 6:52 PM

    While some people on here are calling the Panther’s classless you might also want to look at the flipside which is Steve Smith, although no doubt still very talented and the true team leader, is a ticking time bomb with a massive ego that will never accept the fact he is no longer an “elite” receiver and therefore should still be paid like one.

  51. orivar says: Mar 10, 2014 7:05 PM

    This would be a stupid move. He’s still their best weapon. Getting rid of your best player to then sign Nicks would still be moving backwards.

  52. sumkat says: Mar 10, 2014 7:16 PM

    Most teams would probably like Smith on their roster

    Very few teams are going to like Smith on their roster at that cap number

    No teams are going to give up anything to have Smith on their roster at that cap number

  53. imnotsorryisaidthat says: Mar 10, 2014 7:17 PM

    He is 34,slow,over paid,injury prone..if he is your best weapon you r in trouble Panthers

  54. clt2 says: Mar 10, 2014 7:26 PM

    If this is true it is stunning – and stupid. There is no financial gain to cutting Smith, and you are going to tick of the fan base. I’ve agreed with most of what Gettleman has done so far, but this leaves me shaking my head.

    I’ve been a fan through a 2-14 season, a lot of medicore seasons, and a few really good ones, and this is the first time I’ve been truly disgusted with my team.

    Give the guy some help and let him slide over to the slot. As a slot receiver he still has a couple good years.

  55. sdchargerdeserter420 says: Mar 10, 2014 7:29 PM

    I am always confused when a team says they are going to cut a player or announce them as a likely cap casualty… and then try and trade them. What’s the point of that? Its like walking into a pawn shop expecting top dollar for what you are selling to them.

  56. trubroncfan07 says: Mar 10, 2014 7:33 PM

    Hey remember when the NFL told the NFLPA that were going to put in a rookie pay scale so that the money would go to the veterans, well now the rookies make half of what they used to and the vets over 30 are not getting paid. The players got bent over on that deal.

  57. phinfan says: Mar 10, 2014 7:36 PM

    Trade You J.S. for Wallace ;)

  58. leatherface2012 says: Mar 10, 2014 7:41 PM

    how does this affect aaron rodgers and eddie lacy. thats the real question.

  59. pantherfan40 says: Mar 10, 2014 8:06 PM

    steve is gunna knock gettleman out

  60. pantherfan40 says: Mar 10, 2014 8:07 PM

    gettleman i respect u but you trippin homeboy

  61. blackqbwhiterb says: Mar 10, 2014 8:25 PM

    If I was looking for a 5’9″ WR who’s way past 30, I’d get Santana Moss.

  62. daknight93 says: Mar 10, 2014 8:26 PM

    he is still a good receiver at his age and has at least 2 years left in the tank before retiring.

  63. hopelesslyoptimisticdallasfan says: Mar 10, 2014 8:52 PM

    straight up for Miles Austin? both overpaid

  64. chargersdiehard says: Mar 10, 2014 8:56 PM

    He’s coming to the Bolts. His old coach is here and he will put our offense off the charts!

  65. 216orangeandbrown says: Mar 10, 2014 9:30 PM

    Steve Smith Panthers>Hawks

  66. 49erfan44 says: Mar 10, 2014 10:59 PM

    Eric Decker’s replacement.

  67. jlmd17 says: Mar 10, 2014 11:30 PM

    Sucker punch.

  68. pantherpro says: Mar 10, 2014 11:38 PM

    No ! Stay for the Super Bowl trophy Ice Man

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