Steve Smith is known as the heartbeat of the Carolina Panthers; every game you see him giving his time life when they are down. You can imagine how he feels thinking the one team he has ever played for is considering him a thing of the past.
According to NFL.com, Gettleman appeared at the NFL combine and while taking questions, Steve Smith’s name was thrown in the equation. Gettleman’s response didn’t sit too well with Agent 89.
“Steve’s had a great career,” Gettleman said, “and the bottom line is, it’s part of the evaluation process.”
When word got back to Smith, he wasn’t too happy. Is his career with the Panthers ending? Smith spoke with WBT-AM in Charlotte and expressed his concern.
“(I) would have wished that I would have been afforded the opportunity to be given a heads up by our GM and also with coach (Ron) Rivera,” Smith told WBT-AM in Charlotte. “When I did my exit meeting, no one spoke to me about it in that manner, so the unfortunate part of it is I had to hear secondhand.”
“We have to read into things and we try not to, but when we speak of an individual’s career in the past tense, I think ultimately it would suggest that a team is moving on, and that’s all I can do,” he said. “No one has still reached out to me and told me anything.”
“I’m just taking it one day at time. I don’t really know what’s going on, to be honest,” he said. “… Until a couple days ago, I didn’t know my football career was in jeopardy, so it’s a lot that I have to process.”
Smith has been in the league since 2001, being drafted by the Panthers. 13 years with one team, you grow some type of attachment, especially after every game you leave your heart and soul on the field. Smith is one of the few lasting veterans on that team and still plays as if he was drafted that year. Losing Smith doesn’t mean just losing a great player for the Panthers, but also a great role model and asset.
Who else is going to be scream in opponent’s face with no fear?