The Carolina Panthers are expected to release franchise icon Steve Smith, and it will be a sad day when they do. Another team will take advantage of the high-end WR2’s talents, though, and it’s possible that the WR-needy Baltimore Ravens could scoop up the still-talented wideout.
According to the NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, we shouldn’t be surprised if the Ravens “emerge as his landing spot” this offseason. The Ravens re-signed Dennis Pitta to a five-year deal in a crucial move earlier this offseason, but the move was fully expected and not enough to cross off pass-catcher as a need for the Ravens. They desperately need to give Joe Flacco one more top receiver, and they need to go after someone who is reliable.
Smith is plenty reliable, and he drew a lot of coverage away from the other receivers in order to simplify things for Cam Newton in the Panthers offense. He had worse numbers than usual, but Smith was still good and was used in a different role. He and Torrey Smith would form a nice WR pair, and signing him would allow the Ravens to wait a bit before drafting another receiver. As long as Smith is affordable, I think he makes plenty of sense for the Ravens to at least look into.