Steve Smith at least has a career inradio if free agency doesn’t work out. The 34-year-old receiver provided Charlotte’sWFNZ with an entertaining interview on his release after thirteen seasons withthe Panthers.
“This was the first time I have everbeen fired from a job or let go,” Smith confessed over the airwaves, admittingthat it feels “different.” Rather than slam the Panthers front office on theway out of town, Smith told host Frank Garcia that he wasn’t going to run downan organization that allowed him to raise his kids in a safe home. “I’m notgonna argue with you,” the five-time Pro Bowler explained of his release. “That’sthe way you feel…. I accept that.”
“My folks always told me about working hard,”Smith said, noting that his dad still works in a warehouse. “That’s what I havetried to do.” The receiver, who said he wants to be buried in Charlotte, respondedto critics by saying he has managed “to not be a nuisance in the community, notto cost my community or taxpayers any money, or any more money than we’realready spending. I think I have done that. I haven’t got arrested, at leastfor the past ten years. I don’t drink. I don’t do any of those things.”
Smith says he plans on putting on flipflops, drinking a cup of coffee, and watching his kid’s soccer game beforedelving into the search for a new team. “It’s a new chapter in this book of mylife,” Smith noted. “But there are phrases in this chapter that will carryon and do you know what those phrases are, Frank? ‘Ice up son!'”
Where does the aging split end end up?The New England Patriots, Baltimore Ravens, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers appear aspossible landing spots. “I weigh 186. I have not since last Tuesday missed aday of workouts,” he explained about free agency. “They’re going to get thebest, in-shape 35-year old guy that they can get. And if that happens to runthrough Bank of America Stadium, put your goggles on because there is going tobe blood and guts everywhere.”