Steve Smith. when you say the name you think intensity. Fiery. Incendiary. He has been our playmaker for the last decade and helped make Carolina relevant in the football community. Though times have changed and so have the Carolina Panthers. Our mercurial 5'9 receiver seems ready to hang up the black and blue. As fans, we are torn by this. As a Carolina fan, its hard to see arguably the best player in franchise history leave. I too was in shambles for a few days when I read reports of his soon speculated departure. But as I really looked over the roster and Carolina's new philosphy, is it necessarily a bad thing that Smith is leaving? I mean Smith is soon to be 32 and will decline soon. Carolina could trade him for drafts picks or a pretty decent player. There are both pros and cons to Steve staying or leaving.
- Provides Veteran receiving target for rookie or Veteran Quarterback. Smitty has always been a reliable target and will continue to be for a little bit longer. He stills displays the quickness that made him so dangerous. The Panthers would not have to worry about acquiring a new #1 receiver for at least a year. Smith would be able to bring a sense of stability to a young and relatively inexperienced receivng core. Also Steve would definitely get his fair share of balls thrown his way. He would be our new QB's best friend.
- Steve takes reps away from younger players and keeps them from valuable on the field experience We all saw what the veteran purge did to our team. But it also gave a lot of players valuable experience and allowed players to blossom. Who would think Charles Johnson would post 11.5 sacks. Captain Munnerlyn be a possible competent #2 cornerback. Or David Gettis and Brandon LaFell be solid starters. If Smith leaves then players will have to step up.So the glass is half full. We could see one of our young receivers breakout( Kealoha Pilares anyone) or acquire a young stud like Sidney Rice. If Smith leaves, it isn't the end of the world. More Steve smith analysis after the jump...
- Steve Smith automatically makes the run game and passing game better This guy has never been afraid to throw a block on someone. Steve Smith is Hines Ward 2.0. He will smack anyone in the mouth to open holes for Double Trouble... excuse me Triple Threat, now that Mike Goodson has shown to be a very able runningback. The defense also has to keep Steve doubled because he can still burn you! He will open up our passing game. Steve Smith is still a playmaker. He could be pivotal to the development a young Quarterback .
- Steve Smith will be sub par due to not having a legitimate receiving threat across from him How long has Steve Smith waited for a comparable receiver to take pressure off of him? Heck how long have we waited? Fans, the media, even Steve himself have asked the FO to acquire another receiving threat. While we do have young talent at the receiver position, no D-Coordinator is scared of David Gettis, Armanti Edwards, Brandon LaFell, or Kealoha Pilares. We thought we had one in Jarrett and look where that got us. Definitely one of the reasons are why Steve is disgruntled.
- Steve provides swagger and competitiveness to a hurting franchise One of the reasons Steve Smith is so popular in Carolina is his attitude! No one wants to win more than him and he has shown on numerous occasions that he will do whatever it takes to get the job done. Smith took a relatively dull offense and injected excitement into it. Everyone who has ever seen a Carolina game can think of multiple times Smith has done something amazing all because he willed it.. Remember the Houston Texans game where Steve Smith pretty much shrugged off half the defense for touchdown!?Steve Smith is the Chuck Norris of football. Steve Smith doesn't catch the ball the ball has to catch Steve Smith!
- Steve Smith's attitude hinders this young team from reaching their full potential Steve Smith while a great player can have a bad attitude, especially if he is losing. Smith'sl oud mouth can hinder team dynamics by his comments and actions. He punched Ken Lucas' lights out. Made comments about Jimmy Clausen that sure didn't help his development as pro. Called out Jarrett about not putting in enough work to learn the playbook.He is not a mentor in anyway to our young players. Does this sound like a good teammmate? Most people would hate to have someone like this on their team. Steve appears to be in a "me" mode and not "team" mode. I can' blame him for wanting to leave. I am sure he has his own personal goals and accolades he would like to reach before his career is finished. But once again this a glass half empty/full scenario. Do you sacrifice your most potent playmaker to keep the locker room together or keep him for his production value? Tough call.
Those are just a few my self relevatory pros and cons concerning the Steve Smith saga. What are your opinions on Steve staying or going? How does he help or hurt the team? Please comment below.