Steve Smith is an angry man by nature, but today he’s smiling as the Panthers will announce a contract extension for the explosive wide receiver. The 11-year veteran has spent his entire NFL career with the Panthers and likely will retire there.
Last season, Smith caught 79 passes for 1,394 yards with seven touchdowns playing under new offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski in a pass-first option offense. Smith went to the Pro Bowl along with rookie quarterback Cam Newton.
After a few down years, Smith reignited when Newton came in, helping him break the rookie passing record previously held by Peyton Manning.
The Carolina front office released this statement:
"Steve has been a difference maker at receiver for us since he's been here," Panthers general manager Marty Hurney said. "It's always good to keep your core players. We felt like Steve made it very clear that he wanted to finish career as a Panther. We're glad he did."
Smith has hauled in 699 passes during his career for 10,278 yards and 59 TDs. He also has six returns for touchdowns, four on punts and two on kickoffs.
A third round pick in 2001, he has been known to get into altercations with teammates because of his fiery attitude. That has never deterred the Panthers from keeping him around, giving him a six-year $45 million extension back in 2007.
Details on the contract have not been released as of yet.