Steve Smith "is not going to play for the Panthers next year" according to agent

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Now it's a matter of time before the veteran receiver is released.

Steve Smith could be playing football in 2014, it just wont be for the Carolina Panthers.

The 34-year-old receiver is waiting for the team to make an announcement on his future, but his agent isn't holding back. Derrick Fox told the Associated Press what we've been hearing for the better part of a week, it's over.

Smith's longtime representative Derrick Fox told The Associated Press on Wednesday that Smith "is not going to play for the Panthers next year, I know that. I just don't know when that transaction is going to take place."

It's an unsurprising report given recent information indicating that the two sides are simply too far apart from an organizational standpoint which is based on Smith's role in the locker room and organization, not the money he is scheduled to make in 2014.

Dragging this out would be an unfortunate end to an established career by the Panthers best receiver. It's best for all concerned to pull this BandAid off quickly, rather than letting it linger. This was always going to be a painful breakup, nothing will change that -- but delaying an announcement and delaying Smith's path to free agency is an unneccesary end to his career with the Panthers.

It seems the veteran is having a rough time with the decision too.

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