The Carolina Panthers and star receiver Steve Smith have agreed to terms on a three-year extension, according to Pro Football Weekly. The financial terms of the extension have not been disclosed, but the deal should keep Steve Smith in Carolina for the rest of his career, or at least through 2015.
This is a good move by the Panthers. Steve Smith has been with the team since 2001, and put up huge numbers last year catching 79 balls for 1,394 yards. He also added 7 touchdowns to those numbers. Smith is currently sitting at 699 career receptions, so he needs just one more to reach a major milestone at 700.
Last season, rookie QB Cam Newton hooked up quite a bit with Smith, which is another reason the Panthers chose to give him an extension. Newton feels more comfortable, as do all young quarterbacks, when they have a reliable target to throw to. Moreover, the Panthers don’t have any other big-name receivers on their roster. The only other receivers that played a significant role last season were Brandon LaFell and David Gettis.
Keeping Smith in Carolina blue was a good move by Carolina, and it also gave the team some cap relief, as Smith’s signing bonus will likely be spread out over three more years.
Update: Steve Smith’s extension includes roughly $18 million in guaranteed money, according to a league source.
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