Carolina Panthers wide receiver Steve Smith missed practice Wednesday -- and for the second time in four days -- to address a foot infection with a doctor. Head coach Ron Rivera said he doesn't know the specifics, but he doesn't think it's anything too serious. The Panthers play the Jets on Sunday.
If we were in the regular season, maybe this would be a bigger deal. Right now, not so much. But I wanted to write about it so that I could get a few words in about Smith. We know that wide receiver is pretty deep with talent this year. But among the top WRs in this league, I think I have heard the least amount of fantasy talk regarding Smith.
With major help from Cam Newton, he rebounded from two sub-par years to post 1,394 yards and seven touchdowns last season. But Father Time has to catch up to him at some popint right? Maybe the second half of last year gave us a hint as Smith had just one 100-yard game after the Panthers' Week 9 bye. While he still possesses good speed, he is 33 years old. Plus, he hasn't scored more than seven times since 2006. That is his ceiling, but at least he's steady.
Smith's 2011 totals were inflated thanks to a few crazy outputs in the first month of the season. For 2012, I think you should consider something between 1,100-1,200 yards with another 6-7 scores to be a strong season. FFToolbox has ranked Smith properly among WRs at No. 14. Just don't draft him off of last year's stats, because I strongly doubt he repeats them, much less tops them.