Jan 12, 2014; Charlotte, NC, USA; Carolina Panthers wide receiver Steve Smith (89) celebrates a touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers during the first half of the 2013 NFC divisional playoff football game at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

NFL Rumors: Carolina Panthers releasing Steve Smith doesn't make sense financially

The Carolina Panthers just threw some serious coin at defensive end Greg Hardy and they’ll be needing to the same in the very near future to quarterback Cam Newton who is in line for a fat extension. In addition to paying Newton, the Panthers need to kind long-term money for linebacker Luke Kuechly as well as the recently tagged Hardy.

But while the Panthers are in a bit of a cap crunch, they won’t be cutting veteran wideout Steve Smith to save cash. According to ESPN.com Panthers blogger David Newton, cutting Smith to save cap space really doesn’t make any sense since he’s not that big a hit against the books.

Financially, it makes little sense. If Carolina releases Smith it would owe him about $5 million in guaranteed money and would take a $2 million hit in the salary cap.The team also would take a substantial hit in 2015 the way the deal is structured.

Newton continued to say that the issue of cutting Smith would be more weighted towards whether or not he’s an issue in the locker room if he’s not the No. 1 receiver.

Given that Smith is a staple with the Panthers and the greatest receiver to ever play for the franchise, it’d be understandable if he was miffed but unlikely that he becomes such a big problem that he’s released.

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Tags: Carolina Panthers NFL Free Agency 2014 Steve Smith

  • chad Anderson

    I personally believe that GM has a good reason to do what he is doing. Light a spark under his #$$ and bring back that fire he once brought to the game. Bring Smith off that high horse of knowing he is the one and let him know he has to keep that job it’s not just a title that’s Given based on his past. That’s just my panthers 2 cents

    • Stephen Fuller

      He’s not acted like he’s on a high horse. He’s simply been the best we’ve had nearly his entire career. Including just last year. He deserves more than this. 2011 wasn’t long ago he stuck with us when we were down. If he goes then a large part of the heart of this team and it’s fan base will go with him. My 2 cents

  • chad Anderson

    Without a doubt best player in Carolina history, but this being a business and his age factoring in. It may be time to turn the page in this book. I’m a Smith fan all day and it would crush me to see him play elsewhere but I know all good things must come to and end.. case and point Emmit Smith. . My panthers 2 cents