WR Steve Smith - Free Agent
|5-9, 179||Born: 5-12-1979||College: Utah||Drafted: Round 3, pick 74 (2001)|
2016 Week 1 vs BUF (8 / 5 / 19 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith led the Ravens in receptions and snaps but did little to suggest he will be a productive part of the Ravens offense. Smith made his first three catches on curl routes failing to gain any yards after making the catch. Smith simply went limp and allowed himself to be tackled. Another worrisome sign was Smith running the wrong route, Smith ran an out and up when Flacco expected an out route. The miscommunication nearly led to a pick six but the ball fell through the arms of Ronald Darby. On his final target Smith gained separation on a comeback route covered by Ronald Darby but Flacco's throw was out of reach. Smith did not look explosive and was not productive. If the trend continues expect Perriman and Aiken to eat into Smith's snaps.
2016 Week 2 vs CLE (6 / 3 / 64 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith looked more like himself after a rough outing week 1. Smith's first two targets were an interception by Joe Haden and a pass deflection again by Haden. Smith made all his catches in quick succession. Smith made his first catch on an in route beating Joe Haden for 14 yards and setting up a field goal attempt before the half. Smith opened the second half with a 19 yard gain running an out route and 31 more yards down the sideline the following play beating Joe Haden once again. I saw Smith with his hands on his hips frequently throughout the game. Either Smith was tired or frustrated with his involvement. Smith should continue to regain his form and make more plays as the season progresses.
2016 Week 3 vs JAX (11 / 8 / 87 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith looked more like himself against the Jaguars. Smith dropped his first target over the middle running a curl route. Flacco threw short of Smith the following play with pressure in his face. Smith made his first catch on an in route and exploded up field with room to run, gaining 23. Smith looked fast and explosive on the play and nearly hurdled a defender. Smith beat Jalen Ramsey on 3rd and short for 9 yards running a curl route outside against the rookie. Smith picked up 22 more beating the coverage on an in route. Smith picked up 15 more working over the middle, finding the hole in zone coverage, making the catch and getting up field. Flacco went to Smith when he needed a play on 4th down with the game on the line and Smith delivered with a nice catch and a first down.
2016 Week 4 vs OAK (11 / 8 / 111 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith made his first catch finding the soft spot in the zone coverage for a gain of 17. Steve Smith came wide open on a crossing route but Flacco missed the mark with pressure in his face. Steve Smith made two underneath catches but was dropped for minimal gains each time. Smith again came wide open in the middle of the field and Flacco found him for a 20 yard gain. Steve Smith beat David Amerson on an in route broke a tackle and juked Reggie Nelson on his way to a 52 yard touchdown. Smith continues to look better each week and Flacco will continue to pepper his favorite receiver with targets.
2016 Week 5 vs WAS (3 / 3 / 29 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith made his first catch over the middle gaining 15. Smith followed it up with a catch underneath and limped to the sideline after the play. Smith had his ankle taped and returned to make a 7 yard catch on 3rd and short but again limped off the field favoring his ankle. Smith would not return.
2016 Week 9 vs PIT (7 / 4 / 47 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith returned and was heavily involved in the offense. Smith made his first catch and showed off his explosiveness. Smith made a catch on a shallow crosser, stiff armed Mike Mitchell and ran up the sideline for a 30 yard gain. Smith had an 11 yard reception negated by a holding penalty. Smith beat his man on a slant route gaining 9 yards. Smith converted a third and short with a 3 yard reception running an out route. Smith converted a 2 point attempt running a double move on the goal line and went low to make a nice catch. Smith looked healthy and Flacco looked for Smith when the Ravens needed to make a play.
2016 Week 10 vs CLE (7 / 5 / 60 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith looked like the Ravens number one receiver against the Browns. Smith made his first catch underneath running a curl route and gained 6 yards. Smith and Flacco could not connect on a pair of deep targets or Smith could have had a much bigger game. Smith managed to get one hand on a 40 yard bomb from Flacco but could not secure the pass. Smith made a 17 yard catch working back to Flacco off of play action. Smith made a catch underneath on a crossing route then stiff armed Tramon Williams to the ground on his way to a 12 yard gain. Smith caught a slant between 2 defenders for an 11 yard touchdown.
2016 Week 11 vs DAL (9 / 8 / 99 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith looked like the Ravens number one weapon on offense against the Cowboys. Smith made his first catch on an underneath crossing route and gained 7. Steve Smith made an acrobatic catch on the sideline to convert a 3rd and 12 managing to get both his feet inbounds. Steve Smith made his 1000th career reception running an in route and finding yards after the catch for a gain of 22. Smith found a soft spot in the coverage and Flacco found him for another 22 yard gain over the middle. Smith showed off his acceleration making a catch on a crossing route and running past defenders for a 17 yard gain. Smith looked like the fastest player on the field. Smith beat his man on a slant route for a 5 yard touchdown.
2016 Week 12 vs CIN (4 / 4 / 20 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith had just a 3 yard reception and a 5 yard catch in the first half. Smith caught a pass over the middle for an 8 yard gain. Smith was not involved in the offense and had 2 costly penalties.
2016 Week 13 vs MIA (10 / 6 / 53 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith played well and remains Flacco's go-to target when the Ravens need a first down. Smith caught a slant between two defenders underneath and juked a defender before being brought down after a 23 yard gain. Smith gained 5 yards running a curl route underneath. Smith converted a 3rd and short and picked up 8 yards beating his man on an out route. Smith ran another out route and gained 8 yards this time converting a 4th and 2 to keep the drive alive. Smith gained 5 yards running a curl route.
2016 Week 14 vs NE (6 / 4 / 57 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was the Ravens most productive receiver against the Patriots but did not see a high volume of targets. Smith released up the seam and Flacco connected with Smith for an 18 yard gain in front of the Patriots deep safeties. Smith made running a curl route for a 5 yard gain. Smith made a catch and on an underneath crossing route and ducked out of bounds after 9 yards. Steve Smith double caught a beautiful 25 yard completion on a back shoulder throw.
2016 Week 15 vs PHI (7 / 2 / 40 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith and Flacco were unable to connect on their first four targets. Smith burned Jalen Mills with a slick release and caught a perfect pass from Flacco for a 34 yard touchdown. Smith made a nice catch running a crossing route for 8 yards converting a key 3rd and 7. Smith dropped what would have been a 5 yard gain.
2016 Week 16 vs PIT (7 / 7 / 79 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith was the only Ravens receiver making plays downfield against the Steelers. Smith played with an attitude the whole game and looked to determined to help his team win. Smith came open running a dig route, made a nice grab, and spun out of two tackles before racing down the sideline for a 44 yard gain. Smith gained 9 running a curl route against zone coverage. Smith picked up 4 yards running a shallow crossing route. Lined up in the slot Smith got a match up with Ryan Shazier running down the seam and hauled in a strike from Flacco for a 18 yard touchdown. Smith converted the 2 point attempt after the touchdown running a nice curl route. Smith gained 4 yards running a curl route.
2016 Week 17 vs CIN (5 / 3 / 34 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was not heavily involved in the game plan in his final game. Smith made a 13 yard catch running an in route over the middle. Smith showed off his speed and picked up 14 making a catch on shallow crossing route. Smith made a nice grab on a pass that was thrown slightly behind him for a 7 yard gain and a 3rd down conversion.
2015 Week 1 vs DEN (7 / 2 / 13 / 0 rec)
Line up for most of the day against Aqib Talib, Steve Smith faced the perfect storm of circumstances. When Flacco had time, Smith struggled to get open. When Smith managed to get open, Flacco was hurried. On one third-and-2 play, Smith got open over the middle and Flacco had time to throw it, but Talib's closing speed enabled him to recover and defend the pass. While he was unable to do anything on offense, Baltimore did put Steve Smith on punt return duty against Denver, and Smith's 32 return yards were the first he's had since the 2010 season.
2015 Week 2 vs OAK (16 / 10 / 150 / 0 rec)
Smith was targeted a whopping 16 times (35% of Flacco's 45 attempts) and made the most of his opportunities with just under 10 yards per target. It was a special performance by the veteran as the degree of difficulty on many of the catches was extremely high and he just made big play after big play. Early in the game, Smith made a spectacular leaping grab down the sideline for what would have been a long catch, but wasn't able to keep both feet in. A couple plays later, he made a sweet jumping grab on a crossing route for a 37-yard gain that set the Ravens up with 1st-and-goal. He was targeted in the end zone two plays later on a jump ball opportunity but was well covered. Smith made a pair of impressive grabs for big gains in the two-minute offense before half to setup a field goal. Smith ran an amazing route late in the 4th quarter to get wide open in the end zone. Unfortunately, Flacco threw it way high. Smith twisted and leaped high to make the difficult catch but the misthrow pulled him too far outside and he only got one foot down. Overall, it was an inspired performance from Smith who was the best player on the field.
2015 Week 3 vs CIN (17 / 13 / 186 / 2 rec)
Steve Smith was a target hog for the Ravens not only being peppered by targets throughout the game downfield but also receiving quick screen passes. His first two receptions were quick swing passes only amounting to 10 yards as the Bengals rallied to the ball and tackled well. Smith dropped a quick screen on his next target with room to run. Then on the following play Smith had a deep pass from Flacco hit him in the chin as he wrestled with Dre Kirkpatrick for position. Kirkpatrick was flagged for illegal contact on the incompletion. Smith's next reception was a crossing pattern for 13 yards. Smith's first chunk play came on the opening possession of the second half when he snagged a bullet from Flacco over the middle on a post route for 20 yards. Smith picked up 13 more on a shallow crossing route a few plays later. On fourth down Smith showed his strength catching a curl route short of the first marker slipped a Kirkpatrick tackle, breezed by Rey Maualuga and sprinted into the end zone for a 50 yard touchdown. Smith was sprung free by two key blocks from Marlon Brown. Smith picked up another 20 yards beating Adam Jones over the middle as a shallow crosser occupied the middle linebacker. Facing 2nd and 20 Flacco went to Smith on back to back plays. First a shallow crossing route added 8 yards to Smith's totals. Then Smith slipped a Leon Hall tackle on an out route for 14 more yards. Smith capped the drive with a 16 yard touchdown on a back shoulder throw as he jousted for position with Kirkpatrick. Smith did make another clutch 5 yard catch on 4th down but it was negated by a facemask penalty.
2015 Week 4 vs PIT (7 / 4 / 24 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith caught his first target on an out route, picking up 12, and came up gimpy after Lawrence Timmons caught him by the ankle. Smith returned a few plays later and did not appear to be favoring his ankle. Smith's second reception was a quick screen yielding only 5 yards. Smith was brought down by Mike Mitchell on the play and it may have been the source of Smith's back contusion that later held him out of the game. Smith made back to back catches in the third quarter before leaving the game with a back injury. He was hit by Timmons and Blake as he reached for a first down. Smith stretched with trainers and rode the stationary bike but was unable to return. Smith didn't see any downfield targets before leaving with injury.
2015 Week 6 vs SF (10 / 7 / 137 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith returned from injury and provided a spark for the downfield passing game of the Ravens. Smith looked quick and explosive but not quite as eager as usual to initiate contact. Smith's first reception was a slow developing crossing route against zone coverage for 19 yards. Smith exploded off the line in the red zone on a slant route but dropped a potential touchdown in the back of the end zone. Smith found a hole in the 49ers defense on an in route before spinning up field and ducking out of bounds for 29 yards. Smith dropped another touchdown pass from Flacco on what would have been a diving 19 yard catch. Smith redeemed himself by leaping and snatching a heave from Flacco in the corner of the end zone beating Kenneth Acker for the 34 yard touchdown. Smith had a 12 yard reception negated by penalty. Smith caught a bullet from Flacco running down the seam just in front of safety Trumaine Brock for 19 yards. Smith's final reception again came over the middle, in front of the safeties but behind the linebackers gaining 22.
2015 Week 7 vs ARI (9 / 5 / 78 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith got off to a hot start but faced tight coverage down the stretch. Smith had a 5 yard reception nullified by offsetting penalties. Smith took a shallow crossing route and muscled his way down the sideline for a gain of 22. Smith slammed on the breaks and caught a laser from Flacco on a deep comeback route for 16 yards. Lined up from the slot, Smith ran a rub route down the seam and Flacco found him just in front of Reshad Johnson for a gain of 29. Smith picked up 7 more yards on a shallow crossing route before being spun out of bounds. Smith should continue to get numerous targets as the Ravens only viable downfield option in the passing game.
2015 Week 8 vs SD (7 / 5 / 82 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith's first target fell incomplete but pass interference could have been called; Jason Verrett pulled Smith's arm down as he reached to make the catch. Flacco went back to him on a quick throw to the flat the next play but Verrett wrestled Smith out of bounds after a gain of 3. Smith was well covered initially but ran up field as Flacco escaped the pocket and boxed out Verrett to haul in the jump ball for 46 yards. Smith ran a crossing route again beating Verrett for 9 yards. Smith gained 8 on a curl route and fought for yardage before being gang tackled by 4 defenders. Smith sat down underneath the zone coverage caught the pass from Flacco and exploded up field slipping a tackle for 17 yards. After he was tackled Smith immediately pointed to his ankle and signaled for trainers to assist him. Smith tore his Achilles and will miss the remainder of the season.
2014 Week 1 vs CIN (15 / 7 / 118 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith produced mixed results in his debut but proved he can still be a high end contributor. He opened the game snagging a pass thrown behind him for a first down on third and short but he would end up missing opportunities before repaying Flacco with a big play. Smith dropped a slant pattern after taking a hit, but it was a play NFL receivers have to make. His next target was a deep crossing pattern where he streaked open 15 yards downfield but couldn't secure a Flacco pass a little behind him. Again it was a play that should have been made. Smith was credited with another drop on an ugly, late Flacco pass but he did well just to get a hand on it. That's when Smith hit his stride. He made nice catches on slant routes and fought for yards on screen passes. Smith showed his veteran savvy as Flacco escaped the pocket; he eluded his man deep downfield, caught a bomb and then threw Pacman Jones to the ground with one arm before walking into the end zone.
2014 Week 2 vs PIT (10 / 6 / 71 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith came out and made a statement with his intensity from the first snap. Even more apparent than his feistiness are his quickness and burst. Smith ran a little hitch route against off coverage then proceeded to make Cortez Allen miss badly and drew a facemask penalty on top of it. Smith's next reception was remarkably similar to the first. Facing off coverage, Smith ran a quick slant and turned a 2 yard reception into a 20 yard gain with hard cuts and smart running. In the red zone Flacco turned down two open targets to give Smith a chance to make a play in the corner of the end zone but the pass was overthrown. Smith received another end zone target as he flashed across Polamalu on a slant route and nearly secured the pass but it was jarred loose by a hard hit from Mitchell. However, the hit was deemed illegal and a personal foul was awarded. Smith converted back to back 3rd downs for the Ravens. The first was a curl against off coverage. The second was a slant route he exploded up field on, picking up 20 yards and another facemask penalty. Smith got another catch on a shallow cross on the 5 yard line but was swarmed by defenders before he could get to the end zone. Smith was peppered with red zone targets which may explain the Ravens red zone inefficiency. However, if the trend continues, Smith could end up with double digit touchdowns.
2014 Week 3 vs CLE (7 / 5 / 101 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was dominate throughout the game. He was clearly getting separation from the start of the game. Smith beat his man vertically lined up from the slot, but Flacco threw underneath to Daniels, never seeing the veteran get behind his man. Smith got behind his man again on a nearly identical play but Flacco overshot Smith in the end zone. Smith got wide open on a 5 yard slant route and made his money after the catch. He wasn't brought down by Haden before gaining 25 yards. Smith made a big play in the 4th quarter when Flacco scrambled and threw him a jump ball he hauled in for 30 yards. Smith closed the game out by beating Joe Haden down the sideline on a stutter and go for a gain of 30 more yards.
2014 Week 4 vs CAR (10 / 7 / 139 / 2 rec)
Steve Smith dominated in his return to Carolina. He opened the game displaying his impressive run after the catch ability. Even with an imperfect throw and a defender closing in, Smith can plant his foot in the ground and explode up field past the defender. Coupled with a vicious stiff arm, he can turn 2 yard dump offs into 15 yard gains. Smith's second reception was even more impressive on a comeback route where he reached down and away from his body to snatch the ball out of the air. He then fought for 2 extra yards and a first down. His biggest play of the game came on a target to Owen Daniels who tipped the ball into the air directly into Smith's hands for a walk in 60 touchdown. Smith's next touchdown was a well-run 9 route he easily separated from the corner and made a leaping catch in the corner of the end zone despite being interfered with.
2014 Week 5 vs IND (7 / 5 / 34 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith wasn't as involved as he usually is and faced much more man to man coverage than in previous weeks from a pesky Vontae Davis. Smith made his first catch on a slant beating Davis inside and extending his arms for a nice catch and 16 yards. On one play Smith wasn't covered by Davis, he drew a 28 yard pass interference penalty as he tried to run past Toler. Steve Smith dropped a 3rd down conversion to stall a drive. Smith was contained well by the Colts who didn't allow him to do damage after the catch or get separation downfield.
2014 Week 6 vs TB (6 / 5 / 110 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith had another dominate game. Smith got an end zone target but could only get one hand on the pass. Smith ran a double move against Verner who didn't bite on the fake but Smith accelerated and fought past him to catch a well thrown deep ball from Flacco for a 56 yard touchdown. Smith caught a nicely timed slant route for 13 yards. On a later possession Smith caught 3 targets to power a scoring drive. The first was a deep in route for 18 yards. The second was a well-timed comeback. The third was a slant just in front of the defender. Smith remains the Ravens' key chain mover and very involved in the offense.
2014 Week 7 vs ATL (5 / 3 / 67 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith had a relatively quiet game when he wasn't jawing with Desmond Trufant. The two were constantly at each other's necks and Smith ripped off Trufant's helmet after an interception. Smith's first reception was negated by penalty. It was a screen thrown under duress Smith turned into 9 yards. Smith's next reception was a slant between 2 defenders in zone. Smith did well to secure the low pass. Smith showed his acceleration and top end speed are still strong assets for him. He took a quick screen pass outrunning the defense for 49 yards.
2014 Week 8 vs CIN (9 / 3 / 35 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith picked up his first reception on a crossing pattern against man coverage from Hall for 12 yards. On his second target he appeared to just stop running his route and the pass from Flacco was nearly intercepted. Smith nearly caught the game winning touchdown but was flagged for pass interference as he pulled Iloka to the ground before the ball arrived.
2014 Week 9 vs PIT (8 / 5 / 36 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith played well but never broke free for a big play. All of his receptions were short without much chance for yardage after the catch. Smith's first target was a quick screen leading him into defenders that fell incomplete. Smith's first catch was a comeback route against Gay picking up 11. Smith did get a 1 on 1 chance to make a play on a deep end zone throw but McCain broke up the pass nicely.
2014 Week 10 vs TEN (7 / 3 / 17 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith looked very human against the Titans. Smith saw his first target fall short of him and dropped the second over the middle of the field. Smith caught his first pass running an out route for 11 yards. Smith then appeared to stumble as he tried to catch up to another Flacco pass leading to another incompletion. The following play the Ravens set up Smith with a screen and an army of blockers but he was unable to find any space before being dropped promptly. Smith didn't get any downfield targets or come close to making a big play.
2014 Week 12 vs NO (6 / 4 / 89 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith had a strong game and reminded fans of his big play ability. Smith's first target was a miscommunication with Flacco over the middle leading to an incompletion. Flacco expected Smith to settle down in the zone but Smith kept running the crossing pattern. Smith came back a few plays later and snatched an uncontested comeback route thanks to a well-designed play for 15 yards up the sideline. Smith capped the opening drive with an amazing catch while being blanketed by the corner, falling out of bounds and held on for the 15 yard touchdown. Smith may no longer be the fastest player but when he sees the ball sailing towards him, he gains separation. Flacco threw a beautiful pass to Smith running a 9 route and Smith simply attacked the ball and hauled in a 40 yard catch. Smith had a slant from Flacco bounce off his hands. 2 plays later Flacco escaped the pocket and Smith snuck behind his defender to catch the lob pass and sprint up the sideline for a gain of 20.
2014 Week 13 vs SD (4 / 1 / 2 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith had a horrid game. Smith beat Wright deep and drew a flag for pass interference in the end zone but that was his lone highlight. Smith had a slant route go through his hands. Smith dropped another pass after coming wide open on a crossing route. A few plays later Smith caught a pass despite tight coverage from Flowers in the end zone but Smith lost the ball going to the ground.
2014 Week 14 vs MIA (11 / 7 / 70 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith missed a few chances for a bigger day statistically but made plays and helped his team win. Smith slipped out of his break on his first target and watched the pass sail over his head. He came back the next play and took a shallow cross for 8 yards. Smith again came wide open on a crossing route, caught the pass and sprinted towards the sideline picking up 27 yards. In the red zone Smith dropped a would-be touchdown with Brent Grimes in tight coverage. Smith caught his touchdown with 4 seconds left in the half coming open off of play action for the 1 yard score. Smith caught a screen pass the Dolphins saw coming a mile away and lost 4 yards. Smith made a catch on a curl route, slipped a tackle, and ran out of bounds gaining 15 yards. Flacco came back to Smith who beat Grimes for 18 yards on a back shoulder throw down the sideline.
2014 Week 15 vs JAX (5 / 5 / 37 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was another casualty of the game plan. Smith's only receptions were on curl routes and he was never able to create separation deep or slip a tackle for a big gain.
2014 Week 16 vs HOU (12 / 5 / 49 / 0 rec)
Smith was targeted 12 times during the game, but only caught 5 passes. That was not Smith's fault though, who was running wide open several times Sunday but Joe Flacco missed him so bad with the throw, Smith wasn't even able to get a hand on the ball. Smith laid out for a ball in the second half and knocked the wind out of himself, but it was indicative of the high level of effort Smith displayed. Smith disappeared at times this season, but Sunday showed that he has at least one more season in the tank.
2014 Week 17 vs CLE (12 / 8 / 90 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith made most of his money on comeback routes and deep crossing patterns. Smith had two misses early in the game. The first Smith dropped as he worked back to Flacco. The second fell short of Smith because Flacco was hit as he threw but Smith had gained plenty of separation for an easy completion. His third target drew a very questionable pass interference call on Buster Skrine. His first reception was a screen pass on third and long. His next 2 receptions came on curl routes for gains of 8 and 11. The 11 yard catch put Smith over 1,000 yards for the 8th time in his career. Smith came open on a deep crossing route picking up 21 before fumbling the ball out of bounds. Smith made a nice sliding catch to jumpstart a Ravens drive. Smith again caught a deep crossing route beating zone coverage for a gain of 24 setting up first and goal.
2014 Week 18 vs PIT (7 / 5 / 101 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith Sr. made the big plays he thrived on early in the season. Smith made his first catch on a deep crossing route gaining 23. The zone was left wide open thanks to Torrey Smith running a 9 route and occupying the safety. Smith made his second catch on a slant route for 14 yards setting up a Justin Tucker field goal . Smith beat Brice McCain deep and hauled in a contested catch for a 40 yard gain on a 9 route. Smith caught a nice pass from Flacco on a dig route picking up 18.
2014 Week 19 vs NE (4 / 3 / 44 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith found little success when facing off with Darrelle Revis. Smith was able to draw two key penalties against Revis including a questionable 20 yard interference call. To open the game Steve Smith caught his first target out of the slot against zone coverage on a crossing route for 19 yards. Smith made another catch on a crossing route nearly identical to his first but this time gaining 26 and making an impressive hands catch on a high pass. Smith beat Revis inside on a dig route and bobbled the pass before double catching it and securing the 9 yard touchdown. Smith was otherwise unable to shake Revis' tight coverage.
2013 Week 1 vs SEA (8 / 6 / 51 / 1 rec)
The 13-year veteran looked as sprightly and determined as ever against a feisty Seattle secondary. Smith, who led the Panthers in receptions, was moved all over the formation to maximize his effectiveness. Stacked alignments, whereby Smith would be allowed a free release behind another receiver, were particularly effective. There was an emphasis on getting him the football on crossing patterns, especially on third down. Smith and quarterback Cam Newton seemed to find a rhythm, as a patient Newton hit Smith on a beautiful comeback route and a well-placed bullet on a drag route. Smith fell just two yards short of a touchdown as Newton fired a quick out to his diminutive receiver. Smith dodged a would-be tackler and bulled into another, falling inches short. However, he would not be denied and hit pay dirt for Carolina's sole touchdown as Newton fired a laser to Smith on a shallow crossing pattern. The savvy Smith had only to find the soft spot among the Seattle linebackers and, with the play designed to draw a linebacker away on the backside of the formation, it was pitch and catch.
2013 Week 2 vs BUF (11 / 5 / 52 / 0 rec)
The first play from scrimmage came on a comeback route toward the left sideline to Smith, beating his man back to the football for nine yards. On second and ten from Carolina's own 40 yard line, the Panthers ran play-action, Smith worked back to the football up the left sideline for nine, in a play that looked very similar to his first catch. Smith ran a fade route with just under two minutes remaining in the first quarter, which would have resulted in a big gain without CB Leodis McKelvin's excellent coverage. Smith looked a tad banged up after this play, hitting the ground hard, and proceeding to sit out a few plays. Three consecutive targets to Smith resulted in one catch, and a first down, on third down. He ran ten yards upfield, broke out and sat in a vacant zone for Newton to deliver the football to. It was clear Smith was Newton's favorite receiver of the first half, as his tenth target came on a thirteen yard gain toward the left sideline. Smith's first target drew a defensive pass interference penalty, gaining nine yards and a fresh set of downs. Smith was able to beat McKelvin on a ten yard curl up the left sideline, working back to the football and providing Newton with a relatively easy throw. On third and goal from the nine, the pass to Steve Smith on an eight yard out route was incomplete, leading the Panthers to settle for a field goal off the Buffalo fumble. It was once again obvious that Smith was Newton's go-to receiver, amassing eleven targets on the day. It really felt like more. Smith's name was called out countless times, yet he only totaled 52 yards. He is still a very good football player, but won't likely be the number one receiving threat on any championship team this late in his career.
2013 Week 3 vs NYG (7 / 3 / 40 / 0 rec)
Despite an early 15-yard dig route that was batted down by the Giants defender in coverage on Steve Smith, Cam Newton did not shy away from the Panthers' most targeted receiver. A lively Smith kept the attention of the Giants' defense despite only recording three catches. Newton attempted an end zone fade route to his pint-sized receiver in the first half, but the football was wide of the mark and, despite Smith's best efforts, he was unable to haul it in. Newton will have been kicking himself after missing Smith on a streak down the left sideline; the ball did not have sufficient air under it, but if Newton had placed it better, it would have been a walk-in touchdown. As the game script swung Carolina's way in the second half, the Panthers relied on the ground attack and Smith was not a focus of the game plan. However, the emphasis on getting Smith - who still plays with a massive chip on his shoulder and an unquenchable desire - the ball is a large part of offensive coordinator Mike Shula's game plan despite a quiet week statistically.
2013 Week 5 vs ARI (10 / 4 / 60 / 0 rec)
Drawing the top class coverage of All Pro cornerback Patrick Peterson for the majority of the game, Steve Smith had his hands full. At one point Smith gave up an offensive pass interference penalty as he attempted a subtle push-off on Peterson, but the officials were wise to the veteran's old tricks. Cam Newton targeted Smith early and often, but his first target should have been an opening drive touchdown strike. Smith and LaFell ran a rub concept in the red zone, with Smith getting free on a quick slant. Newton zipped a perfect pass into Smith's midriff, but the receiver, in an uncharacteristic moment of sloppiness, could not hold on. Smith followed that error up with another, as another Newton pass thudded off his hands. The diminutive pass catcher settled into the game slowly but surely, notching a couple of catches in the two-minute drill. For the most part, Smith was stymied by a below average Panthers offensive performance. The Cardinals' front seven hunted in packs, and cut a lot of Carolina's drives short. Two of Cam Newton's three interceptions came on targets for Smith. One was another slant route in the red zone, with Daryl Washington dropping underneath to snag the football. The second was a deep shot down the right sideline that Newton underthrew, allowing Patrick Peterson, who had perfect coverage, to rise high and snag the ball. In an error-strewn performance, Smith was symptomatic of the Panthers' offensive woes.
2013 Week 6 vs MIN (7 / 5 / 21 / 1 rec)
The feisty receiver may not have made significant waves in the box score, but his early touchdown ñ nearly a carbon copy of the one against Arizona last week that he dropped ñ set the tone for his quarterback and the entire offense. On 4th-and-1 in the red zone, Smith was motioned across the formation in a four-wide set, creating a three-by-one alignment. Smith, at the base of the three-receiver bunch, ran a shallow cross, with the other receivers "picking" the defensive backs. Smith adjusted well to the football to reel in only his second touchdown of the season. Like the other receivers on the Panthers roster, Smith was the victim of a rather conservative game plan once the team got into a comfortable lead. Regardless, Cam Newton continued to look Smith's way and the two hooked up on a slant pattern late on as Smith laid out for a wonderful catch. Consider this the floor for Smith's production as it appears Newton and the Panthers are establishing the semblance of an offensive rhythm.
2013 Week 7 vs STL (6 / 5 / 69 / 1 rec)
In a passionate display, Steve Smith became embroiled in a classic receiver versus defensive back battle with the equally feisty Janoris Jenkins. Tempers flared on occasion, leading to a mass brawl on the field in the third quarter. On the field of play, Smith continued to get open against Jenkins with some nice breaks out of his routes. Smith failed to reel in a pass from Newton on the back shoulder fade early on, but more than made up for it with some grabs in traffic. Smith reached pay dirt, beating Janoris Jenkins, after running a shallow cross in the red zone. Newton held on until the last second and delivered a pass in stride to the diminutive wide out. Smith dodged a poor tackle attempt by Jenkins and waltzed in to the end zone. Earlier, Newton hit Smith between the numbers on a slant route, but despite Smith's best efforts to reach out for the goal line, he fell just a few inches shy. It is evident based on the past few weeks that the Panthers are finding creative ways to get Smith the football, especially in the red zone.
2013 Week 8 vs TB (7 / 4 / 42 / 0 rec)
Tampa Bay chose to match Darrelle Revis up with Steve Smith in man-to-man coverage on early downs, leading to some good tussles between the pair. However, on an early third down, Carolina motioned Smith to the slot and Tampa's defense went to a zone look, allowing Newton to connect with Smith on a 21-yard dig route. That completion triggered a change of strategy and Revis was subsequently asked to shadow Smith all over the field. Newton opted not to force the ball into his most dangerous receiver, instead spreading it around smartly. Revis managed to stick in Smith's back pocket and limit him to short gains, usually on quick-hitting passes over the middle.
2013 Week 9 vs ATL (10 / 4 / 52 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith will have been ruing what could have been in this game. Cam Newton, who didn't look the assured, accurate passer of the past few weeks, let some passes intended for his top target sail. Smith twice got open in the intermediate range of the field on the deep dig, but an antsy Newton was unable to deliver an accurate pass. Smith shone in his limited action, however, starting off strongly with good leg drive on a quick slant to move the chains. Smith did a tremendous job to stay with his quarterback when he was forced to escape to pocket, finding a soft spot to secure a first down. On one of Newton's two interceptions, there was a miscommunication on the route as confirmed by head coach Ron Rivera in his post-game press conference. Smith ran a 9-stop route, while Newton expected a 9-fade. The overthrown pass was intercepted, but it is not clear who made the error. As with the rest of the Carolina receiving corps, Smith continues to suffer due to the Panthers' successful rushing attack and the game scripts that accompany it, but his level of play is high and he would have had a more productive outing in the box score had Newton shown more accuracy.
2013 Week 10 vs SF (11 / 6 / 63 / 0 rec)
After being blanked in the first half due to a combination of inaccurate Newton passes and mental errors on Smith's part, the diminutive receiver came to life after the interval. The Panthers' leading pass-catcher on the day, Smith expertly worked from both the slot and outside, using his veteran savvy to get open with subtle push-offs and quickness out of his breaks. His day started off poorly, however, with two uncharacteristic drops on straightforward completions. In the third quarter, on 3rd-and-12, Newton fizzed a ball down the seam to Smith, only for the pass to come loose of his grasp after he initially had it. A determined Smith, undeterred, responded with a nice play as he bailed Newton out on 3rd-and-7, coming back to the football along the sideline as his quarterback was flushed right. Smith came up with a crucial catch in the waning moments as well, keeping the drive alive as the Panthers looked to run out the clock. The veteran made some correctable errors, but was a key figure in the Panthers' victory.
2013 Week 11 vs NE (6 / 4 / 62 / 0 rec)
In a typically ill-tempered battle with Aqib Talib, with whom Smith has a history dating back to Talib's days in Tampa Bay, the diminutive receiver seemed to gain an early edge. After an early target for Smith that was almost undercut by Talib, Smith rebounded with a 42-yard catch over Talib, gaining a step on the defensive back with a nice move at the line of scrimmage. Smith followed that up with an arguably more impressive catch, as he reeled in a high Newton pass on a shallow crossing pattern for a key first down. Smith was well covered by a feisty Talib for the majority of the game, but his contribution in drawing coverage underneath and, at times, over the top, helped other receivers find space which they capitalised on.
2013 Week 12 vs MIA (8 / 5 / 69 / 0 rec)
Feisty weapon Steve Smith led the Panthers' receivers in catches against Miami and looked spry and energetic throughout. Smith announced his intentions early with a beautiful spin move after the catch to gain first down yardage. Smith and Newton hooked up on a nice slant route against a Miami blitz as the game wore on, demonstrating the excellent timing and understanding between the pair. A solid Smith performance continued when he reeled in a 4th-and-10 shot from Newton over the middle, adding a few extra yards due to his outstanding effort on the play. While not targeted deep, Smith excelled once again in the short to intermediate range of the field.
2013 Week 13 vs TB (4 / 3 / 51 / 0 rec)
Covered well for the majority of this divisional contest by Darrelle Revis, Steve Smith only came alive when Revis picked up a shoulder and chest injury that forced him out of the game. Cam Newton, smelling blood, went to Smith immediately and the pint-sized playmaker showed his skills on a shallow cross, battling for extra yardage at the tail end of the play. Newton connected with Smith earlier on timing patterns outside the numbers and a drilled quick slant, but this was not a game script that lent itself to a Smith 100+ yard performance, with Carolina controlling matters.
2013 Week 14 vs NO (8 / 6 / 49 / 1 rec)
Working mostly as an underneath target in the Panthers' fairly conservative passing offense, Steve Smith showed veteran savvy to find the open spaces in the Saints' zone coverage, and showed good hand-fighting skill to get off press coverage. Smith was targeted on a wide receiver screen pass, but the play was blown up immediately by Saints cornerback Keenan Lewis, who saw the danger and reacted fastest. In a game where the Panthers trailed early, Cam Newton tried to get the football to Smith, but in general he was covered well, even as he started to run deeper patterns in the closing stages. The patience of Newton and Smith paid off in the waning moments as Newton, rolling out of the pocket and away from pressure, found a waiting Smith in the end zone. Smith kept himself available to catch the pass by working hard and using a subtle push-off to gain a yard of separation.
2013 Week 15 vs NYJ (5 / 3 / 20 / 0 rec)
It was a relatively quiet game for Steve Smith. Smith caught all three of his passes early in the second quarter. Smith made his biggest play on 3rd-and-3 where he outmuscled Antonio Cromartie off the line of scrimmage secured inside position for an 11-yard gain. Cam Newton had a lot of success throwing to Brandon LaFell and Greg Olsen, so Smith basically became a moot point in the game plan.
2013 Week 16 vs NO (2 / 1 / 44 / 0 rec)
Prior to his injury in the first quarter, later diagnosed as a sprained PCL, Smith looked at his best when he caught a looping Cam Newton deep pass down the seam for 44 yards. Smith used a nice move off the line of scrimmage to get inside leverage on the cornerback and protected himself as he waited for the ball to fall into his arms. It remains to be seen how long he will be out with his knee ligament sprain, but Panthers head coach Ron Rivera calls it 'week to week'.
2013 Week 19 vs SF (5 / 4 / 74 / 1 rec)
The return of the prodigal receiver looked to be on track early as a fired-up Steve Smith announced his presence on a six-yard catch in traffic, going low between two defenders. He and Newton seemed to have a rhythm going, as they hooked up soon after on a 28-yard completion that seemed to ignite the Panthers offense. Seemingly unaffected by his knee injury in the first half, Smith got on the receiving end of a beautifully placed Newton pass on a nine route as he lofted it over the trailing cornerback and into Smith's waiting hands. Smith set the route up perfectly, buying himself some space initially to get outside the defender before skirting the sideline and keep the defender at arm's length to look in the football. In the second half the tide turned, with the 49ers much more aggressive, allowing Smith fewer opportunities. The passing game stalled out and Smith became a non-factor, visibly limping on a couple of routes in the fourth quarter. It was a valiant effort by the number one option in the Panthers' passing attack.
2012 Week 1 vs TB (11 / 7 / 106 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith looks as good as he ever has. Showing no signs of rustiness after a lay-off due to a foot infection, Smith exploded out of the gate with a hitch route that he turned into an explosive play by weaving his way down the sideline, stiff-arming a CB on the way. The diminutive playmaker was lining up all over the field, creating difficult situations for the Bucs defense. Smith looked in control on sideline grabs, including a back-shoulder fade. On a shallow crossing route, he finished strong once again and popped right back up even after absorbing a bone-crunching hit from SS Mark Barron. Newton and Smith could have had a bigger day had it not been for a few choice plays.
2012 Week 2 vs NO (4 / 3 / 104 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith recorded yet another century of yardage against the Saints and looked good doing it. Smith got off the mark with a sick sideline catch on third and long, committing the CB inside before breaking back out. He then dove to cradle the pass as it floated towards him for a 35-yard gain. In typical Smith fashion, the CB had good position, but the explosive playmaker wanted it more. Smith drew pass interference on a red zone target that could have been a touchdown as well. He caught a 66-yard pass late in the game when a broken coverage by New Orleans left him in plenty of real estate on the sideline. Smith is a no-brainer WR1 with the level that this offense is playing at.
2012 Week 3 vs NYG (4 / 4 / 86 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was kept quiet in this game, limited to four catches. The reason behind it was the lack of pass protection Newton was afforded and decent coverage by CB Corey Webster. Smith drew a couple of pass interference penalties on Webster, so in truth his day could have been more productive. Smith looks as spirited as ever on the field and can be relied upon for a 70+ yard game each and every week, especially if the Panthers are forced to play from behind.
2012 Week 4 vs ATL (6 / 3 / 52 / 0 rec, 1 / 10 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith was kept under wraps for the majority of this game, although he did produce a couple of beautiful plays on dig patterns that kept drives alive. Smith went up against CB Dunta Robinson, who did a good job of keeping him quiet. Smith fumbled the football early on an end-around, the ball getting popped out by Robinson. Despite his unimpressive box score numbers, Smith opened up passes for other receivers, including Greg Olsen on his red zone touchdown reception. Better days are ahead for Smith as long as this offense continues to hum as it has for the most part this season.
2012 Week 5 vs SEA (13 / 4 / 40 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was targeted often by his struggling quarterback, but with middling success. To be frank, Smith dropped a couple of catchable passes himself, including a dig route that seemed to just go through his hands. Newton fired a deep pass to Smith on a 9-route late in the game, another pass that Smith could have made a better effort to haul in. However, Smith struggled against both Seattle CB's who physically matched him blow for blow and made every catch contested. Smith drew a penalty flag on the cornerbacks for holding, but equally Smith was flagged for holding them. It was an all-game battle, but it did enough to take Smith out of the game and hamstrung this passing offense.
2012 Week 7 vs DAL (9 / 7 / 83 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith has still not accounted for a touchdown this season as the flailing Panthers offense continues to disappoint in 2012. Smith was the beneficiary of aggressive linebackers against play action throughout the game; each time they were sucked in by the zone read, Newton would throw to Smith over their heads. Smith was a bright spot of the offense the entire day and seemed to thrive in the slot, from which most of his catches originated. Smith was targeted once in the red zone, but a flag was thrown as he was held coming out of his break. Smith was a threat throughout the game and was once again Newton's favourite target. The lack of explosive downfield plays has to be a concern, however.
2012 Week 8 vs CHI (16 / 7 / 118 / 0 rec)
Smith had a pretty big day against his coverage--Tim Jennings--both in terms of yardage as well as penalty flags. Jennings and Smith went to war on every snap and the result was a day where either guy could claim victory. Smith got plenty of yards, but no touchdowns--which is classic Bears defense. They bend and don't break. Cam Newton looked for Smith on almost half his passes, so he was either unafraid of Jennings (mistake) or not confident in anyone else. Smith did a very good job against very physical coverage. There were a few times, such as one pass in the early second quarter, where Newton stared Smith down so hard that Jennings had enough time to get a real shot at the ball. The two players spent the day going back and forth, Smith getting catches and yards, but Jennings keeping him from a huge play. It was a tremendous battle between two savvy veterans--two of the NFL's best players. Smith was, not surprisingly, most effective when the coverage shifted or the Bears were in a zone look, as he was able to get away from Jennings and make a play over guys like Chris Conte who didn't match up with him as well.
2012 Week 9 vs WAS (7 / 3 / 41 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith and the Panthers' passing offense as a whole failed to click in this contest, as Newton completed just 13 passes altogether. However, the former Utah Ute played his part, catching a well-floated fade route from Newton for a score. Smith ran a great route, committing the DB inside before running to the corner and pulling in the ball. Smith did drop a catchable pass on third down on a deep dig route later in the game, but overall was a reliable target for Newton. Missing Brandon LaFell - an underrated part of this passing attack - meant more of the burden was on the veteran Smith, but he responded well.
2012 Week 10 vs DEN (7 / 1 / 19 / 0 rec, 1 / 2 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith cut a frustrated figure on the field at times against Denver. With the Panthers' pass protection melting away like an ice cream on a hot day, Smith was unable to convert targets into catches as Newton often had to double-clutch the ball. The Broncos' coverage was excellent the entire game; after beginning in zone, they switched to man and this made all the difference. The Panthers made an effort to get the ball to Smith on a screen pass early on, but it flew over his head. A deep target later fell harmlessly to the grass; it appeared Newton and Smith were not on the same page. His lone catch of significance was a deep dig route in the third quarter which went for 20 yards, but other than that he - and the entire passing attack other than Olsen - were kept under wraps.
2012 Week 11 vs TB (7 / 5 / 61 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was not on the same page as his quarterback in the opening couple of series, as the duo failed to link up on a curl route, and later on a deep target. However, their connection blossomed as the game wore on. Newton completed a variety of timing throws to Smith - the quick slants into tight windows in particular were impressive, mainly due to Smith's clean release and strong hands. Smith had a touchdown pass in his hands on a 20-yard pass in the red zone, but he clearly pushed off the defensive back and it did not count. It should be noted that Smith's production began to pick up in the second-half after an injury to CB Eric Wright. The connection between Newton and Smith isn't quite where it needs to be to allow Smith to hit the century mark each week.
2012 Week 12 vs PHI (7 / 4 / 60 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith did not light up the box scores by any means, but he managed to draw coverage to an extent that other receivers were able to benefit. All of his receptions came off play action as he managed to use the slight hesitation of defensive backs and linebackers to get open. Smith continues to make difficult catches look routine, as he did on a dig route in the second quarter. Overall, it was a quiet day statistically, but his influence on the game was felt.
2012 Week 13 vs KC (9 / 5 / 120 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith and Cam Newton seemed to click for the most part as the duo combined on several nice timing patterns throughout. Smith, after an injury to a Chiefs' starting cornerback, took advantage of a match-up with a rookie to score his first touchdown. The 23-yard strike down the left sideline landed perfectly in Smith's hands, but the receiver had a lot of work to do. He fought to gain the outside against press coverage, and then slow played the cornerback into thinking he was at top speed. As soon as the DB hesitated, Smith bounded after the ball and dove for it, securing it as he hit the ground. Smith was the recipient of some screen passes as well in an effort to get him the ball in space, although the passes were too high on occasion. Smith's numbers were elevated in the final moments after he impressively caught a Newton Hail Mary pass as the Panthers tried to muster an unlikely comeback in the waning seconds. Smith's talents were on full show; he still has the route-running ability and savvy, the quickness and the downfield speed and hands to deliver for his quarterback.
2012 Week 14 vs ATL (12 / 7 / 109 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith seemed to have a larger chip on his shoulder that usual in this divisional game against the Falcons. From the beginning, it was obvious that Cam Newton wanted to force feed Smith the football in a variety of ways. Offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski lined Smith up all over the field so that no single cornerback was responsible. No matter who Smith went up against, his speed, hands, body control and awareness made their coverage null and void. A 19-yard catch in the first half was a perfect example of these skills meshing together in one play. The football was delivered high, but Smith rose for it and trapped it in his vice-like hands, remaining conscious of where the sideline was all the while. He tapped both feet quickly on a catch that summed up his day. Smith was highly consistent all afternoon; his only complaint might be that Newton missed him on a couple of occasions, including a corner route against the blitz in the red zone. Smith found himself open, but Newton, instead of lofting the pass to the back pylon, threw a dart that Smith was unable to locate.
2012 Week 15 vs SD (9 / 6 / 57 / 1 rec, 1 / 15 / 0 rush)
Smith didn't post overwhelming statistics, but he was by far the biggest weapon for either team's passing game. He went over 1,000 yards for the season on his first catch of the game, even mixing it up with a defender and getting the opponent whistled for an unnecessary roughness penalty in the process. Smith seemed to have a far too easy time getting open considering he was the biggest known threat coming into the game. Late in the first half, he had the ball in his hands in the end zone but lost control as he was hit. As it turned out, it wouldn't have mattered as Carolina was called for offensive pass interference on the play anyway. He was again targeted in the end zone on the very next play, but again didn't come up with the catch. He finally did connect on a score late in the game, diving low and to his left on a bullet pass from QB Cam Newton. Smith somehow kept his hands under the ball and then rolled over while maintaining possession, an excellent display of concentration to cap a solid fantasy performance. Smith added 15 yards on a reverse up the left side off an earlier toss from RB DeAngelo Williams.
2012 Week 16 vs OAK (8 / 4 / 45 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith made it two weeks in a row with a touchdown after a veteran push-off unseen by the officials allowed him the separation he needed. Smith lined up in a bunch set pre-snap and ran a wheel route, extending his left arm just enough to allow Newton to drop a pass in over the top and towards the back right pylon for the score. Smith only caught four passes, but the Panthers' passing attack did not have to be dynamic with the Raiders' struggling as they were. The game script, as a result, was not ideal for a 100-yard+ performance from the Panthers' diminutive star.
2012 Week 17 vs NO (9 / 3 / 73 / 0 rec)
Carolina's passing attack took a backseat to its productive running game in the Superdome, but primary target Steve Smith managed to come up with a few plays that kept drives alive. Smith's reception on a comeback route on third down in particular was a standout play. He was able to gain separation on a 9-route down the right sideline, but Newton's pass was slightly overthrown. The very next play, however, Smith exploded off the line and crossed the face of the DB covering him, catching a well-thrown pass for a nice gain. A 31-yard completion down the seam later on in the contest as Smith split the Saints' safeties was his most impressive play - and an example of the connection he and Newton are fostering late on this season.
2011 Week 1 vs ARI (11 / 8 / 178 / 2 rec)
Steve Smith looked like his old self on Sunday with Cam Newton at quarterback. The receiver lined up all over the formation, matching up against both rookie cornerbacks of the Cardinals. He made a great effort to make his first catch, sliding down low to cradle an errant Newton pass. Smith caught two touchdown passes, one of which came when he simply ran past the safety on a blown coverage for an easy walk in score. The other came on a well-executed out-and-go concept. Newton lofted the pass up for Smith, who leaped into the air to snatch it. The receiver was playing with fire in his belly the likes of which hasn't been seen since 2009. This could be a very positive sign of things to come as Newton and Smith hooked up on a number of plays, including screens and one deep pass that would have been another 20+ yard completion had Smith tapped his second foot in bounds.
2011 Week 2 vs GB (13 / 6 / 156 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith continued his hot start to the season with this display against the Packers. Against Charles Woodson, Smith managed to get open often and even drew a penalty on him a couple of times. Smith was technically sound with his route running, including a picture perfect deep comeback route. He made a key mistake later in the game when the Panthers were driving. He caught a pass on a deep crossing route and in his effort to make extra yards, he lost control of the football. It came loose and the Packers recovered in what was a momentum killing play for the offense. Smith had a couple of drops in this game on easy passes, very uncharacteristic for him. Smith hauled in a "Hail Mary" pass from Newton late in the fourth quarter for 62 yards as he got down the seam between the safeties. Smith is a viable start in most leagues now as a WR2 with WR1 upside if he and Newton can continue to connect as they have been.
2011 Week 3 vs JAX (7 / 2 / 15 / 0 rec)
The Cam Newton to Steve Smith air show was grounded this week as the weather and some inaccurate passes by Newton meant the two simply could not get going. Smith was the target of some early passes, including a deep target off play action when Smith failed to tap his second foot in bounds. Smith caught two passes in the fourth quarter on the game-winning drive, including a shallow crossing route for a crucial first down, making a couple of tacklers miss along the way. Consider this the low watermark (no pun intended) for Smith's value. The weather and some inaccurate passes from an inconsistent Cam Newton added up to a frustrating day for the receiver and his owners.
2011 Week 4 vs CHI (10 / 8 / 181 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith played one of his best games in a long time in Chicago on Sunday, electrifying the Panthers passing attack several times with big plays down the field. Smith caught a dig route for a 15 yard gain early, fighting through contact and snatching the ball cleanly out of the air in traffic. When the Bears FS busted a coverage, Smith sprinted down the sideline and caught a 53 yard pass from Newton, almost reaching the end zone on the play. Smith took hit after hit in this game, including some jarring ones, but just kept getting back up and most importantly, hanging on to the football. Smith was absolutely everywhere, catching passes on screens, shallow crosses, dig routes, seam routes and more. Smith should have had a touchdown catch later in the game when he crossed the face of a Bears defender on a crossing route in the end zone. The ball was a little low, but it was delivered where only he could catch it. He failed to do so, unfortunately for him. Steve Smith is a bona fide number one fantasy option at wide receiver going forward. This partnership that he has developed with Cam Newton is only in its infancy. It promises to yield more production as the season goes on.
2011 Week 5 vs NO (7 / 3 / 79 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith continues to be the apple of Cam Newton's eye, unsurprisingly, as the two continued their solid play against the Saints. Smith received extra attention from the Saints defense as the game progressed, explaining his quiet second half. In the first half, Smith produced a phenomenal touchdown reception. Newton, under duress, threw a high ball in Smith's general direction. Smith duly obliged with a leaping catch that must have seen him grow for a moment to six feet four or so. Smith finished the play in superb style, securing the football, shoving the defender in coverage off him with a stiff arm and sprinting to the end zone. Smith was utilised on an end around early which gained 15 yards, a play which was called back by a holding penalty. The Newton to Smith connection will continue to prosper - these two can produce numbers against any defense.
2011 Week 6 vs ATL (7 / 5 / 66 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was held largely in check in this game by Atlanta, who asked Newton to survey the field and pick out his targets in traffic as they played a lot of zone and two-man under defenses. The majority of Smith's production came in the fourth quarter and the two-minute drill at the end of the game. However, he caught a nice pass on deep crossing pattern for 17 yards off play action during which he got excellent separation. Smith was targeted in the end zone in the second quarter on a pass that led to Cam Newton's first interception. The strong safety William Moore tipped the ball in the intermediate zone and it landed fortuitously in the hands of the CB in coverage on Smith in the end zone. This was a rare down day for Smith's connection with Newton; consider this the floor for his production.
2011 Week 7 vs WAS (9 / 7 / 143 / 0 rec, 1 / 6 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith, after a quiet first half, came alive in sync with Cam Newton in the second half. Smith continued his fantastic early season form, catching some pretty passes from Newton. The Panthers got the ball to Smith in numerous ways, including screen and end arounds. On a high pass to the left sideline, Smith leapt into the air for the football and pulled it down for a 33-yard gain. Smith did an excellent job on the play to get both feet down. His deep connection late down to the 1-yard line with Newton was a spectacular pass but an equally spectacular catch by Smith who is rolling back the years. Smith has already outdone his 2010 numbers and we are only seven games into the season. Continue to trust him as a high-end WR2 with WR1 upside most weeks.
2011 Week 8 vs MIN (9 / 7 / 100 / 1 rec, 1 / 12 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith had another 100-yard receiving game as he and Cam Newton continued to connect with good timing and rhythm. Smith played with good aggressiveness, stiff arming a DB on a toss to the outside and finishing the run with good power. Smith was targeted early in the end zone but the pass was thrown a little too far to catch. Later, Newton found Smith down the sideline on a beautiful back shoulder 26-yard catch. At first the play appeared to be a touchdown but it was ruled that Smith was down by contact at the one yard line. Smith ran a variety of routes to good effect, abusing CB Asher Allen on his touchdown by getting to the inside and catching a nice zipped pass from Newton for a score. Smith is a no brainer start every week in fantasy leagues and will continue this pace with an improving Cam Newton.
2011 Week 10 vs TEN (8 / 5 / 33 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was held in check for the first time all season long by a very good performance from feisty CB Cortland Finnegan. Finnegan jammed Smith at the line and stayed in his hip pocket, meaning Newton couldn't find him down the field very often. To get the ball in Smith's hands, Newton hit him on some smoke routes outside, throwing the ball to him quickly against off man coverage. Smith had a couple of late receptions in the two minute drill as well. This is definitely the exception rather than the rule with Newton and this passing attack, so do not be discouraged. Continue to trust Smith as a WR1 going forward.
2011 Week 11 vs DET (10 / 5 / 41 / 1 rec, 1 / 5 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith played with a mean streak in this contest and was able to gain good separation from whoever was covering him throughout the game. Smith caught a touchdown pass from Newton on a post route in the red zone; the pass was zipped in to Smith with great accuracy. Smith drew a couple of illegal contact penalties down the field, and so could have had a bigger day. Smith dropped a key third down pass in the second half on a deep out route. The ball was delivered on target by Newton but Smith mistimed his jump and could not reel it in. Smith caught the two point conversion later in the game on a quick slant in traffic. In all, this was a good game by the veteran receiver, who is a trustworthy WR2 every week with WR1 upside.
2011 Week 12 vs IND (7 / 3 / 68 / 0 rec, 1 / 9 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith did not get started in this game for quite a while as Cam Newton missed him a couple of times on high passes. When Smith made his first reception, he made the most of it. Catching a laser pass between defenders in the secondary on a quick slant, Smith shot up the field for a 30-yard gain. Smith still has such good route-running skill. On a 1st and 20 play, Smith ran the cornerback up the field on a deep comeback, caught the football and pushed the defender in coverage up the field for a 20-yard gain. Smith had offensive pass interference called on him late in the game on a deep pass thrown his way. Smith made an acrobatic adjustment to catch the ball but he was adjudged to have pushed off. Smith's production has taken a slight downturn, but continue to trust him as a borderline WR1.
2011 Week 13 vs TB (6 / 2 / 32 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith owners' were probably rejoicing when CB Aqib Talib went out of the game with a hamstring injury early. Things did not pan out as expected as the Panthers focused more on running the football. Newton went to his other targets as Smith was, more than often, running deeper routes. Tampa Bay's pass rush was quite good throughout the game, and so Newton settled for shorter routes mostly. Smith is going through a down period of the season, but it would be advisable to keep faith with him. With Newton at QB, Smith is always likely to produce a big game.
2011 Week 14 vs ATL (8 / 6 / 125 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith, on a day when he went over 10,000 career receiving yards, had another good game against the rival Falcons. He and Newton were able to connect on some passes in the first half and after cooling off in the third quarter Smith caught a beautiful 48-yard pass down the sideline. Smith reached over the defensive back after some hand fighting and tapped both feet in bounds. Smith was on his game in this one and even stood up for a teammate after a cheap shot by a Falcon. Smith went over one hundred yards for the first game in a few and Smith owners should be pleased. With matchups against the Texans (already clinched playoff berth) and the ailing Buccaneers ahead, the playoffs look good for the diminutive receiver.
2011 Week 15 vs HOU (7 / 5 / 82 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith's elite comeback season continues to roll on with success. Smith caught a touchdown pass early, running the 9-route deep against Johnathan Joseph for the score. The ball was placed perfectly by Newton; all Smith had to do was extend his arms. Smith was targeted deep later, but this time the Texans had him double covered. The fiery receiver came up with some big catches later in the contest, including a 15-yd gain on a crossing route in the fourth quarter. With the amount of attention Smith has been garnering, it is no surprise to see a downturn in his numbers, but be aware that his on-field play is bordering on elite right now.
2011 Week 16 vs TB (3 / 1 / 9 / 0 rec, 1 / 23 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith let his owners down this week in terms of his production, but his season as a whole has been tremendous. Smith has returned to elite fantasy wide receiver status and should stay there for a while. Smith only caught one pass in the game, a screen for 8 yards. Smith also carried the football on an end around for 20 yards later in the game. Consider his quiet day to be a combination of short fields and a lack of opportunity (Newton had only 17 passing attempts).
2011 Week 17 vs NO (7 / 6 / 86 / 1 rec, 1 / 1 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith ended the season in some style, catching a beautiful fade pass from Newton for a touchdown and playing with that usual chip on his shoulder throughout. Smith made connections with Newton throughout, including on out patterns and crossing patterns. Smith made a special catch later in the game as he caught a pass one-handed, pressing it up against his hip and securing it before going out of bounds. Smith fumbled the football away late in the game, but overall had a very solid display. He is a WR1 next season.
2010 Week 1 vs NYG (9 / 5 / 75 / 1 rec)
If you were worried about Smith's formerly broken arm, he put that to rest on his first catch when he collided with a defender, and on his second when he tried to vault another. Smith looked in mid-season form, showing the toughness and focus which characterize his game. He was the sole recipient of a touchdown pass from Moore and again, showed no fear crashing into Giants Safety Kenny Phillips at the goal line. Also notable is that he had his production despite no run game and very shaky play from his quarterback. Smith could use a good receiver across from him, but didn't suffer too much from not having one this week and should produce good numbers again next week.
2010 Week 2 vs TB (9 / 3 / 66 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith came to play on Sunday, as he showed when he caught a pass into tight coverage to convert a key third down in the 1st quarter. Smith ran a crossing route against man coverage and caught the ball awkwardly despite taking two hits after he had secured it. He tucked it away quickly and protected the ball. Smith's touchdown came on fourth down when Moore got it to him on a skinny post with no defenders over the top. Smith got an inside release on his cornerback and sprinted to the end zone. Smith had a rare mental error later in the game when Moore zipped it into him, but he lost his concentration and dropped the pass, probably thinking about going upfield for extra yardage before securing it. Smith was very well marshaled all game long by CB Aqib Talib, who bumped him at the line and disrupted the timing of the passing game. Smith can still perform for this offense, but he needed someone to help him out on Sunday, either at quarterback or wide receiver.
2010 Week 3 vs CIN (5 / 3 / 22 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was well marshaled for most of the game on Sunday by the Bengals defensive backs. Often doubled, Clausen would try to get the ball to Smith, but the diminutive receiver was not able to get open. Smith's first catch of the day was a tremendous grab along the sideline on a good pass from Clausen. Smith did a fabulous job of keeping both feet in bounds. On his next catch, he stiff armed a defender and got out of bounds after getting the first down. However, that was the extent of his contribution, and those catches were all made in the fourth quarter. In order for Smith to be an effective weapon for the Panthers, they will need to find different ways to get the ball in his hands.
2010 Week 4 vs NO (3 / 2 / 11 / 0 rec)
Smith's first target was a short one in the dirt, err, turf at his feet, and his next two targets were also quick throws to him, one slant that was met by a good tackle, and another smoke route that was met with a good tackle that injured Smith's ankle. He was hobbling trying to get off the field with trainer assistance, so it's unlikely that we will see Smith for at least a game or two, not that he was going to do anything with Clausen at QB.
2010 Week 7 vs SF (8 / 4 / 50 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was the main focus of the 49ers secondary throughout the game, which was also one of the biggest reasons rookies David Gettis and Brandon LaFell were able to break out and have such great games. Smith still managed to haul in four balls for an impressive fifty yards and also handled punt returning duties in what was just his first game back from a high ankle sprain injury. It appears that the Panthers' bye week came at a perfect time for Smith. If Moore can continue playing this well for the time being, Smith may very well return to stud fantasy receiver status much sooner than anticipated, especially now that he appears to finally have some competent receivers on the field alongside him.
2010 Week 8 vs STL (15 / 9 / 85 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith made several nice catches in this game on well-timed and well-placed passes from Matt Moore, usually across the middle of the field on slants and in cuts. Smith dropped a very catchable pass which would have gone for about 15 yards on his second target of the game. Smith made a great twisting catch early on, but it turned out to be short of the first down. The Panthers motioned Smith often and lined him up everywhere, and it worked for the most part. In a game lacking explosive plays by either team, however, Smith was held down for most of the day.
2010 Week 9 vs NO (6 / 1 / 9 / 0 rec)
Smith's only reception came on a quick flare-out on the final drive, that kept alive a long streak of consecutive games with a reception. But it didn't matter, as Smith was once again shut down due to the previously mentioned New Orleans pass rush. He did have one deep ball that he brought in, but the play didn't count due to Smith pushing off. The call was kind of shady, and Smith's nightmare season continues.
2010 Week 10 vs TB (6 / 3 / 47 / 0 rec)
Smith's production continued to take a hit with Carolina's struggles at QB. He had another average game with 47 yards on 3 catches, but when he does get touches, still shows the playmaking ability that made him one of the more productive WR's in the league.
2010 Week 11 vs BAL (7 / 4 / 46 / 0 rec)
Smith continues to labor away on yet another dismal passing offense, catching four passes for 46 yards. With the multiple question marks in the passing offense - and with the biggest one at the quarterback position - Smith is a very sketchy weekly play at this point in the season. Unless Jimmy Clausen can magically turn into a capable pro quarterback overnight, wait and see what the team can do at the position in the off-season before making any long term decisions regarding Smith on your team.
2010 Week 12 vs CLE (5 / 2 / 33 / 0 rec)
Smith caught one ball downfield and also broke an ankle tackle to make a nice catch and run, but otherwise he was not heard from. Smith is almost droppable in standard leagues.
2010 Week 13 vs SEA (10 / 3 / 54 / 0 rec)
Smith had one of his biggest plays of the year when he burnt a cornerback and hauled in a deep pass from Clausen for 39 yards. It was a beautiful pass, and one that Panthers fans hope they see more of in 2011. Smith looks obviously frustrated out there, as he still seems to have the physical ability to perform at a high level, but just can't get the ball.
2010 Week 14 vs ATL (3 / 2 / 17 / 0 rec, 1 / 9 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith is clearly frustrated with the lack of any sort of passing attack in Carolina right now. Smith got involved on a nice reverse play that gained 9 yards and got the offense going again. Smith only had two catches and is being criminally underused by offensive coordinator Jeff Davidson. When Smith is targeted, Clausen has trouble getting him the ball either because he is gun shy and does not want to hurt the team by fitting a pass into a tight window or Smith is getting too much attention from the defense. Smith called out his quarterback after a failed 4th down conversion with the score at 17-7 and clearly the receiver is not happy at all right now with his role in this so-called "offense".
2010 Week 15 vs ARI (6 / 2 / 22 / 0 rec)
Although he only caught two passes in this game, Smith was targeted often by Clausen and almost made a couple of big catches down the field. Smith is still frustrated with how things are going in this offense but he has not lost a step at all. If the Panthers do decide to move him in the offseason, another team is going to get a player who has plenty of good games left in his career.
2010 Week 16 vs PIT (8 / 3 / 17 / 0 rec)
No one wanted to be on the field in this game less than Smith. His 3-for-8 catch rate actually isn't nearly as attributable to Jimmy Clausen's inaccuracy as one would think. On at least two occasions, Smith had chances to make catches and simply didn't extend his arms to do so. He had the look of a player who is fed up with losing and was sparing himself a potential injury so he can use the upcoming offseason to prepare for being on a new team. Smith has always overcome average-to-poor QB play to put up great numbers and be an explosive player, but this year, the team's lack of ability to keep games close has clearly frustrated him to the point that he's not "kicking it into that extra gear" as we've seen him do in years past.
2009 Week 1 vs PHI (13 / 3 / 21 / 0 rec, 1 / 4 / 0 rush)
Smith had only two catches until late into the Week 1 game against the Eagles, partly due to QB Jake Delhomme's ineffectiveness but mostly due to excellent defense from Philadelphia. He was also involved more in the first half as he lined up in the shotgun for the snap in a Wildcat formation, where he ran the ball left for a modest gain. Smith did have a few balls that seemed very catchable that bounced off of his hands. Smith looked very frustrated at how the game was going for Carolina, something that is all too common for elite wideouts who do not see enough chances. Smith is an excellent player but when all three of your quarterbacks turn the ball over with regularity it can be a long day at the office.
2009 Week 2 vs ATL (15 / 8 / 131 / 0 rec)
Smith was targeted early and often, and this pattern stayed throughout the game. He was making catches on long touch passes down the sideline, getting both feet down against stiff odds, making tacklers miss on short catches, and otherwise playing like the all-around warrior we expect him to be. Smith did commit an offensive pass interference penalty in the second half to negate one of his catches, and he had a few injury scares, including one on a hail mary at the end of the first half, but Smith mostly showed why he is still one of the best in the game against the Falcons.
2009 Week 3 vs DAL (7 / 4 / 38 / 0 rec)
Smith only made noise on some very short catches that let him do some damage as a runner. He got targeted deep once in the second half, but the ball was off and he was well-covered. His worst moment came with the Panthers down six late. Delhomme was expecting Smith to run a quick slant, but he broke the route outside and Terence Newman ended up with a defensive touchdown.
2009 Week 5 vs WAS (6 / 5 / 65 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith's productive day existed almost completely between the hashmarks. Smith was sent on a number of crossing patterns and "in" routes in an attempt to loosen up the defense for the running game. Smith's 65 yards receiving were the very definition of "hard fought" as he caught the ball on the run and very quickly was wrapped up by the Redskin defense. Smith was held without a touchdown but did catch a 2-point conversion after Stewart's rushing touchdown to give the Panthers a 3 point lead.
2009 Week 6 vs TB (5 / 1 / 4 / 0 rec)
Delhomme couldn't really find his favourite receiver. They never found a rhythm together, and Smith was only looked to on deep routes in the first half. They tried getting the ball to him in different ways in the second half, which resulted first in an interception, and then in Smith's only catch of the game, for a paltry four yards.
2009 Week 7 vs BUF (11 / 6 / 99 / 0 rec)
Smith was bottled up for much of the game, but he slowly but surely piled up targets and yards on short catches with good run after catch ability and body control. He was overthrown on one deep target when he got a step on the defense, but later Delhomme was able to hit Smith in stride when he abused man coverage, and only an ankle tackle kept Smith from scoring a long TD. As long as the Panthers aren't able to control the game and abandon the pas, Smith will find a way to get his.
2009 Week 8 vs ARI (7 / 3 / 56 / 1 rec, 1 / 17 / 0 rush)
Smith doesn't appear to have lost anything but opportunity. He got open for a 56 yard catch and run that marked first TD of the season. He also gained 17 yards on a rare scamper out of the backfield.
2009 Week 9 vs NO (8 / 4 / 64 / 0 rec)
Smith had a modest game by his standards in week 9 going for 64 yards. Despite the modest statistics there is really nothing wrong with his game, for the 3rd straight game he broke off a large gainer but he is often over or under thrown on his deep routes by Jake Delhomme. It's been said before, the Panthers need to find a way to utilize his speed in space. Barring a QB or an offensive philosophy change Smith will be limited in what he is able to do week to week. He is due for a breakout game at this point.
2009 Week 10 vs ATL (4 / 4 / 34 / 2 rec)
Smith usually has big games against Atlanta and he didn't disappoint on Sunday. Although he didn't get behind the defense for any big gains, Smith had a scintillating TD catch while he was being interfered with, and he took a shot to the ribs that sidelined him for a bit to score his other TD on the day. Smith didn't stretch the defense, but he didn't need to because he helped finish drives and get the game script where the Panthers wanted it. This game was a taste of what his value could be if Delhomme continues to play well.
2009 Week 11 vs MIA (15 / 7 / 87 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith overcame a minor car accident on the way to the Thursday night game to post a solid night as the top wide receiver for Carolina in Week 11. The opportunities for big plays were there all night long for Smith as he was beating single coverage consistently but Jake Delhomme was way off target most of the time which cost Smith a huge performance. They finally connected for a touchdown of 27 yards in the fourth quarter on a play where Delhomme threw a nice spiral of a pass but it was truly a jump ball and Smith made one of his outstandingly athletic plays to leap and secure the ball just beyond the goal line and stayed in bounds. Smith has enormous big game potential but is limited by Delhomme's inaccuracy but should still be able to rack up enough catches and yardage to be a must-start every week.
2009 Week 12 vs NYJ (7 / 1 / 5 / 0 rec)
This has to rank as one of the most frustrating days of Smith's career. He didn't realize he was the hot read and had a pass bounce off of his heel as he was running away from it in the first drive of the game. The ball caromed directly to Darrelle Revis, who scored easily. Revis also got an honest interception against Smith on a deep jumpball. Smith did catch a ball in the corner of the end zone, but a review revealed that he didn't have control until after he had skidded out of the end zone. Things are not going to get better for Smith until the Panthers made changes at QB and find a complementary threat for him in the passing game.
2009 Week 13 vs TB (5 / 3 / 78 / 0 rec)
Smith didn't have many targets, but he looked good on the ones he did get. Early in the game, he made a twisting catch of a badly thrown pass by Moore, and then he got way behind the defense for a long catch to set up the Panthers last field goal. He did get open in the corner of the end zone on one goal to go snap, but Moore overthrew him. Smith should get back to WR2 fantasy value this week against the woeful Patriots pass defense.
2009 Week 14 vs NE (7 / 2 / 83 / 1 rec, 2 / 7 / 0 rush)
The Panthers big play receiver only had two catches on the day but both of them went for big plays. One of his receptions was for a 41 yard TD off a post play that set up Carolina within striking distance of what would be a closer than expected game. His other catch was another big play that went for 45 yards. Smith also chipped in with two carries for a meager seven yards, one of which came via direct snap, where he ran for a first down. As long as Smith is limited to just four touches, it will be most difficult for him to contribute that much to the Panthers or your fantasy team.
2009 Week 15 vs MIN (14 / 9 / 157 / 1 rec, 1 / -6 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith was fired up for this game, and it showed. He finished the game as the top receiver by a long shot, and had three huge plays in the fourth quarter to put the Panthers back into the lead and eventually put the game away. He had a 26 yard TD reception called back for a holding penalty late in the third quarter, but he made an excellent play on the ball to come down with that score. At the start of the fourth quarter, on 3rd and 26, he beat his defender into the end zone for an easy score on a big play. His next reception was another key on third down when Moore was under pressure. He rolled out and found Smith just beyond the first down marker. Smith spun away from the defender and when he fell down trying to recover, Smith raced into the open field, bringing the ball down to the three yard line. The Panthers scored two plays later. His final reception was another case where Moore rolled out and found Smith on the sideline after the defender had fallen down. He spun back into the field, picking up another 16 yards, extending the drive and putting the Panthers into position to put the game away for good. He had a season high 157 yards receiving, and is the clear 'go to' guy for Matt Moore.
2009 Week 16 vs NYG (6 / 5 / 60 / 1 rec)
Smith was very sharp in this one, picking up a key early first down with a nice move after the catch, throwing a block to spring a Stewart TD run, and catching a TD in traffic. On the TD he absorbed a hit that broke hie forearm, but he still finished the play and celebrated with the arm tucked into his body. He played great football with Moore at QB, and he will undervalued coming into 2010 fantasy drafts.
2008 Week 3 vs MIN (9 / 4 / 70 / 0 rec)
Smith saw his first action of the regular season and was QB Jake Delhomme's most popular target in the game. In addition to hauling in a 16 yard pass on the team's first play from scrimmage, he also had first half catches of 15 and 29 yards. On the play that went for a gain of 29, Smith made a nice leaping catch as he took the ball down to the Vikings 41 yard line. His only other catch came with four minutes left in the fourth quarter, but he was targeted a number of times on deeper passes that fell incomplete.
2008 Week 4 vs ATL (12 / 6 / 96 / 1 rec)
Smith drew much of the attention of the Atlanta defenders. Still, he was targeted a team high 13 times. Like Muhammad, Smith was effective. However, he was deployed on more short routes than Muhammad was. Smith did score on a 56 yard touchdown reception. The pass came on a deep in route. Smith caught the ball, then broke a tackle and was off to the races for Carolina's longest play of the season. Delhomme targeted Smith on a deep go route, but underthrew the pass. Smith passed 6,000 career receiving yards on the day.
2008 Week 5 vs KC (12 / 6 / 96 / 0 rec)
Smith had a merely good day by his standards, and given the score and the number of opportunities he had. Delhomme constantly went to him deep and in the end zone, and on several occasions was just a hair away from another big catch. If a few of those broke his way, his line would be closer to the 200 yard/multi-TD variety.
2008 Week 6 vs TB (10 / 6 / 112 / 0 rec)
Smith was the most targeted Panther as he finished with 10 looks in the game. He led the way receiving with six receptions for 112 yards. However, Smith was visibly frustrated by the lackluster performance of the offense on the sidelines on numerous occasions, and he dropped a sure touchdown pass in the fourth quarter. Smith was also drilled on a reception attempt, lost the ball and it was picked off by the Buccaneers.
2008 Week 7 vs NO (8 / 6 / 122 / 1 rec)
Smith is an electrifying receiver capable of breaking any pass for a touchdown. He easily led all receivers on the day with six grabs for 122 yards; although he dropped a 25 yard pass in the second half when he was wide open that would have padded his stats. It must have been too easy. He scored a touchdown on a 39 yard pass into the end zone even though he was well defended by both Roman Harper and Randall Gay. Somehow the pass got through and Smith made the catch as he was falling to the ground.
2008 Week 8 vs ARI (8 / 5 / 117 / 2 rec, 1 / -6 / 0 rush)
Smith had a great game scoring both Carolina passing touchdowns, an 18 yarder and a spectacular 65 yard effort both in the third quarter. On that play Smith caught the ball close to the sideline and nearly stepped out of bounds avoiding a tackle before scampering down the sideline.
2008 Week 10 vs OAK (6 / 1 / 9 / 0 rec)
Smith led Carolina with seven targets, but was only able to manage one reception for nine yards. Two passes thrown his way were picked off by the Raiders. Despite the meager stat line, Smith was open on a number of occasions - his day was hampered by Delhomme's inaccuracy.
2008 Week 11 vs DET (10 / 6 / 59 / 0 rec, 1 / 16 / 0 rush)
Smith was the only receiver for the Panthers to see the ball more than three times, and he saw it ten so that shows you how much they want to get him the ball. He also ran the ball on an end around once. He did not score, but he did haul in six catches and ended with 75 all purpose yards.
2008 Week 12 vs ATL (13 / 8 / 168 / 0 rec)
Smith's overall numbers look good as he averaged twenty-one yards per catch on the afternoon, but could have been much bigger. Smith was not targeted until the second quarter of the game, and saw passes underthrown or just out of his reach in and near the end zone on multiple occasions throughout the game. Smith was at his best lining up on the left side and streaking down the sideline or breaking over the middle on a deep route in this game.
2008 Week 13 vs GB (6 / 4 / 105 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was two yards away from two touchdowns in this game. On two long pass plays Smith was tackled on the one yard line. One was an incredible catch. This could have been a very scary good day for Smith on very few targets and receptions.
2008 Week 14 vs TB (9 / 9 / 117 / 1 rec)
Smith had a big game despite the fact the running game had over 300 yards rushing and had four rushing touchdowns. He caught a short seven yard pass in the second quarter and brought it down to the Buccaneers two yard before being driven out of bounds. Smith had only three catches for 31 yards in the first half but would have a much bigger second half. Smith caught a 38 yard touchdown when he got open deep down the field and made a great catch by keeping both feet in bounds. Smith saw a lot of man to man coverage in the second half because the Buccaneers were struggling to stop the run. He finished with a game high nine catches for 117 yards.
2008 Week 15 vs DEN (11 / 9 / 165 / 1 rec, 1 / 9 / 0 rush)
Smith was the focus of the Panthers offense and was targeted a game high 11 times. Smith hauled in nine of those passes for 165 yards. He had receptions of 24, 27, and 38 yards, plus a 15 yard touchdown (on Carolina's opening drive). Smith might have topped 200 yards had Delhomme not overthrown him on his other two targets. Smith ran hard after his receptions and frequently gained extra yardage. On one play, he dragged Dre Bly for an extra seven yards before Denver could finally bring Smith down. Smith also ran nine yards on an end around. He surpassed 500 career receptions during the game. Smith had his fourth straight 100 yard receiving game.
2008 Week 16 vs NYG (6 / 3 / 47 / 0 rec, 2 / 21 / 0 rush)
Smith's first touch came on a third down, backward pass for a gain of 23 yards and a first down. His first catch came on a deep pass and he took the ball down to the New York 11 yard line. On his second catch, Smith hauled in a pass near the side line that brought the ball down to the New York three yard line. He received a second back ward pass in the second quarter that he took for a two yard gain down inside the Giants' one yard line. His third backward catch went for a loss of two yards.
2008 Week 17 vs NO (8 / 5 / 134 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith is the favorite target of Delhomme for good reason. Somehow he is able to get just open enough to catch the ball no matter how well covered he is. On three plays Delhomme was able to get the ball to him on deep passes, despite his being double covered by Saint defenders. His biggest play was on his final reception, a 39 yard completion that gave the Panthers excellent field position after the Saints had just taken the lead. Smith had managed to get open despite being double covered while his quarterback was facing pressure and his catch seemed to take the wind out of the Saint comeback.
2008 Week 19 vs ARI (7 / 2 / 43 / 1 rec)
Steve Smith, who averaged over 100 receiving yards per game during the regular season, and has averaged over 100 receiving yards in every playoff game of his career, didn't make his first catch until there were 48 seconds left in the third quarter. The play covered 35 yards. When he caught his second pass and scored a TD with less than a minute to play in the game, only a handful of Panthers fans were left in the stands.
2007 Week 1 vs STL (13 / 7 / 118 / 1 rec, 1 / 2 / 0 rush)
Smith caught seven passes for 118 yards and a touchdown. The touchdown came on a bomb down the left sideline. It put the Panthers ahead for good. Delhomme looked his way 15 times in the game, the most of any receiver. This was Smith's first 100 yard receiving game in his last eight games dating back to last year. On the opening drive of the game, Delhomme looked to Smith on the first four plays of the game. One of those resulted in a 29 yard pass interference penalty on third down. The Panthers tried Smith on an end around but it only picked up two yards.
2007 Week 2 vs HOU (9 / 8 / 153 / 3 rec)
Smith was targeted nine times in this game. He caught eight passes for 153 yards and three touchdowns. All three of his touchdowns were classic Steve Smith plays. His first touchdown was on a pass that was underthrown in the end zone. Smith went up, tipped it over the defender's head and easily came down with the deflection. His second touchdown was on an out pass and he broke a tackle at the five yard line to score. His final touchdown was on a short pass with Smith never giving up and breaking away from four Houston tacklers. Smith stayed on his feet and then raced the rest of the way to the end zone.
2007 Week 3 vs ATL (5 / 1 / 10 / 0 rec, 1 / 6 / 0 rush)
Smith was blanketed by DeAngelo Hall the entire game. Smith had two uncharacteristic drops early on and he didn't have a catch until there were 10 minutes left in the game. While he didn't contribute with stats, Smith did cause Hall to blow up and possibly cost the Falcons the game. Smith had him beat and forced Hall to commit a 37 yard pass interference penalty. On the very next play Hall was hit with a 15 yard personal foul. On the same drive, Hall continued to jaw at Smith and another 15 yard penalty was thrown on Hall. Carolina then scored a touchdown. So even though he only had one catch, Smith should probably be credited with an assist on the Panthers second touchdown.
2007 Week 4 vs TB (9 / 5 / 32 / 0 rec)
Tampa's defense bottled up Smith and it definitely had Smith frustrated. The cameras picked up Smith yelling into the sideline telephone most likely calling for the ball. Overall Smith had five catches for 32 yards with his longest catch going for 15 yards. All of Smith's catches came on short passes. Carr tried to hit him deep on a couple of plays but they were unsuccessful.
2007 Week 5 vs NO (6 / 4 / 47 / 1 rec)
Smith did not see the ball much until the second half when Carolina began their comeback. He only saw one pass in the first half, a catch off a designed roll out by David Carr. He saw most of his action in the fourth quarter. He had a 20 yard catch in Saints territory in the third quarter that was brought back by penalty. In the fourth quarter he scored the tying touchdown on a catch and run where he put a nice move on the defensive back and walked into the end zone. However, his most important reception was his last one, where he caught the ball on third and ten and willed his way to the first down marker for a key first down that would set up the game winning field goal.
2007 Week 6 vs ARI (12 / 10 / 136 / 1 rec, 2 / 15 / 0 rush)
Smith by far was the biggest offensive star. The Panthers obviously were trying to get Smith the ball often as he lined up at receiver, quarterback and even returned a punt in the game as well. He finished the contest with 136 yards on ten receptions including a beautiful 65 yard touchdown catch when Testaverde hit him in stride down the right side line. Smith ran untouched past the Cardinals secondary to score. He rushed two times for 15 yards (once when he lined up at quarterback in the shot gun.)
2007 Week 8 vs IND (7 / 2 / 18 / 0 rec)
Smith was thrown to eight times but only caught two passes for 18 yards. The Colts were able to completely shut him down. Smith's two catches were on their first two drives. He was targeted on an incomplete pass late in the second quarter but then his next target didn't come until three minutes into the fourth quarter.
2007 Week 9 vs TEN (10 / 3 / 15 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was thrown to ten times but only caught three passes for 15 yards. At one point early in the fourth quarter, Smith had just two catches for zero total yards. His final catch, with ten minutes left in the fourth quarter, resulted in a first down. The Panthers scored two plays later on the touchdown to Carter.
2007 Week 10 vs ATL (11 / 5 / 61 / 0 rec)
Smith was thrown to 11 times in the game. He caught five passes for 61 yards. Smith made a great juggling catch over the middle to pick up 20 yards down to the Atlanta 35 yard line. That was the good part for Smith. The bad was when Smith caught a pass down at the Atlanta two yard line but fumbled the ball out of the end zone for a touchback. The score would have tied the game at seven points each.
2007 Week 12 vs NO (12 / 6 / 47 / 0 rec, 1 / 22 / 0 rush)
Steve Smith caught six passes for 47 yards. The Saints kept him in check and only allowed short completions. Smith was shaken up while blocking and left the game in the second quarter. He returned on the next series though. He got a look when Carolina got down to the nine yard line. The short pass went for minus two yards. It was the only chance Smith saw in the red zone.
2007 Week 13 vs SF (10 / 8 / 64 / 0 rec, 2 / 21 / 0 rush)
Smith was heavily involved in the game. He was targeted 11 times by Testaverde, of which he caught eight passes for 64 yards. Testaverde threw a few receiver screens to Smith and they also tried using Smith lined up at the quarterback position. Each time Smith ran the ball out of that set. He gained 21 yards on two carries. Early in the game, Nate Clements crushed Smith on a late hit after a dropped pass. Clements was hit with a penalty and for the rest of the game the two of them were seen jawing at one another. Smith ran the ball from the San Francisco eight yard line but was pushed out at the three yard line. On Carolina's first touchdown drive, Smith made a very nice over the shoulder catch for 29 yards right by the sideline. Smith did not have any end zone targets in the game. His best chance to score was on the run from the quarterback position when Carolina was inside the San Francisco ten yard line.
2007 Week 14 vs JAX (10 / 6 / 44 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith caught six passes for 44 yards. Smith picked up first downs on three of his catches. He only had one chance inside the Jacksonville 20 yard line. It was an incomplete from the Jacksonville 14 yard line.
2007 Week 15 vs SEA (11 / 8 / 72 / 0 rec, 2 / 0 / 0 rush)
Smith caught eight passes for 72 yards on a total of 11 targets. He picked up four first downs in the game including two of them on third down plays during one of Carolina's field goal drives.
2007 Week 16 vs DAL (15 / 9 / 137 / 1 rec)
Smith came down with a touchdown following DeAngelo Williams' thirty-nine yard run and was by far the primary target in the Panther's offense against the Cowboys. The announcers questioned whether Smith came down with both feet in bounds on his touchdown, however the Cowboys did not challenge the play. Despite the extra attention, Smith averaged 15.2 yards per catch.
2007 Week 17 vs TB (8 / 5 / 48 / 0 rec)
Steve Smith was targeted eight times to lead the team, and finished with five receptions for 48 yards. He was targeted three times on third downs, but just could not find much room downfield for any big plays.
2006 Week 3 vs TB (14 / 7 / 112 / 0 rec)
Both of Smith's first two targets were quick hitters near the line of scrimmage allowing him to use his wheels to turn up field for gains of eight and nine yards. In the second quarter Smith pulled in a deep crossing route and turned it immediately up field for a 33 yard pickup. Smith was targeted eight times before halftime; however, he started the second half on the sideline as a precautionary measure spending extra time stretching his hamstrings. His play on the field showed no indications that his hamstrings were bothering him. After the Buccaneers took the lead Smith bailed out the Panthers with a 41 yard reception down the left sideline. He made a nice move back to the middle of the field to pick up extra yardage.
2006 Week 4 vs NO (13 / 10 / 87 / 1 rec)
Smith looked very much like his normal self, as he caught multiple passes and gained appreciable yardage after the catch. He grabbed ten balls on the afternoon, catching every pass that came his way until late in the third quarter. He did not put up a long gainer, as all of his catches ranged from three to 22 yards. The 22 yard catch was nullified by a challenge, therefore making his 17 yard catch in the fourth the longest on the day. Smith scored the first Carolina touchdown in the first quarter, as QB Jake Delhomme hit him quickly after a no huddle snap to prevent officials from reviewing WR Keyshawn Johnson's catch on the previous play. Smith also made a spectacular grab near the goal line in the first quarter, but was ruled to have come down on his elbow out of bounds before his second foot hit in bounds. He lost a 22 yard catch due to the official video review of the play.
2006 Week 5 vs CLE (12 / 6 / 62 / 0 rec, 1 / 7 / 0 rush)
Smith found himself getting open against the Browns' secondary, however dropped three passes in this game, including what would have been a six yard touchdown early in the second half.
2006 Week 6 vs BAL (11 / 8 / 189 / 1 rec)
Smith had a great day, highlighted by his 72 yard touchdown reception where he made the defender believe he was going to the outside of the field, and then turned in towards the middle with plenty of room to use his speed and take it for six points. On multiple occasions throughout the game, he made adjustments on balls most receivers would not have caught and came down not only with a nice catch, but additional yards after the catch.
2006 Week 7 vs CIN (14 / 8 / 126 / 0 rec)
Once again, Smith was the spark in Carolina offense with eight receptions for 126 yards but failed to find the end zone this week. Smith's biggest gain of the game came on a leaping grab over the middle that netted 36 yards for Carolina. Smith left the field and went into the locker room as trainers taped up his bruised ribs suffered in the first quarter. He returned on the next series for Carolina. In the fourth quarter, he left again left the field after apparently aggravating the rib injury but quickly returned after sitting out a play.
2006 Week 8 vs DAL (9 / 6 / 55 / 0 rec, 1 / 24 / 1 rush)
Smith once again led the Panthers in targets. He didn't do much with them, especially early on when he was covered well by Terrence Newman. Smith had a nice 24 yard end around for a score in the first quarter.
2006 Week 10 vs TB (12 / 8 / 149 / 1 rec, 2 / -5 / 0 rush)
Smith had a quiet first half after making a 22 yard reception on the Panthers' first passing play of the game. Torrie Cox was trying to cover Smith one on one and Delhomme exploited the situation with an accurate pass. Smith was far more effective in the second half. He converted on third and six by catching a deep ball for a 43 yard gain on the Panthers' opening drive of the half. He followed that with two first down receptions of eight yards and 21 yards on the next drive. Smith's biggest play came towards the end of the game when the Bucs blew their coverage allowing Smith to get wide open for a 36 yard touchdown reception. The Panthers tried to get Smith involved in the running game by running him on the reverse. He gained two yards on one and lost seven yards on the other. Smith announced earlier in the season that he no longer wished to return punts, but he was seen returning one in this game. Smith was ill during the game and vomited into a garbage can between drives.
2006 Week 11 vs STL (7 / 4 / 90 / 1 rec)
Smith was targeted deep down the right sideline on the first Carolina play from scrimmage, but QB Jake Delhomme overthrew him slightly. The two hooked up shortly after this for a 22 yard touchdown, but a penalty on an offensive lineman negated the play. Smith also had another reception negated by his own offensive pass interference later in the first quarter. He rebounded before halftime with a 62 yard touchdown over the top. Smith made a nice adjustment coming back to the ball while it was in the air. He missed out on another scoring chance when WR Keyshawn Johnson threw an interception on a reverse intended for Smith. He was open behind the defense, but the pass was under thrown. Smith gave owners a scare when he appeared to injure his shoulder after landing hard on it stretching out for a long reception. He stayed on the ground for a second and looked to be in obvious pain. He was also battling a stomach issue as after the shoulder injury, he promptly went to the sidelines, covered his head with a towel and threw up in a trashcan. Smith quickly returned to action though.
2006 Week 12 vs WAS (10 / 5 / 34 / 1 rec, 1 / 4 / 0 rush)
Smith and the Carolina passing game as a whole, struggled to find much open space in the Washington secondary. Smith was targeted ten times and finished with five receptions for 34 yards, including a nice touchdown reception in the back of the end zone from eight yards out. The play was challenged by Washington and upheld. Smith also ran the ball once, for a four yard gain. Smith made the most out of a play that should have resulted in a loss to pick up the four yards.
2006 Week 13 vs PHI (5 / 4 / 54 / 1 rec, 1 / 15 / 0 rush)
Smith saw a lot of double-teams as the Eagles attempted to take him out of the game. He did get open on the Panthers' second drive, making a nine yard touchdown reception and walking into the end zone. Smith had a 38 yard gain on the final drive of the half and then drew a pass interference call when he was targeted in the end zone to give the Panthers the ball at the one yard line. Smith was only targeted twice in the second half, catching one for a three yard gain. He was used on a reverse as the Panthers looked to win the game and gained 15 yards to bring up first and goal.
2006 Week 14 vs NYG (13 / 5 / 67 / 0 rec)
Smith dropped his first target killing the second Carolina drive. QB Chris Weinke hit him in the hands, but Smith couldn't make the reception on the short pass. His first catch was down the right sideline at the start of the second quarter. Smith went up high to pull down the pass and took a big hit from the safety, but was still able to make the catch. The Panthers attempted to run an end around to Smith deep in their own territory on a first down play. The Giants defended the play well holding Smith to no gain, but the play was nullified by a holding penalty on New York. At the start of the third quarter Smith had a pass thrown slightly behind him go off his hands on a crossing route. The ball was tipped up into the air and intercepted. Weinke's second interception was also thrown his way, but badly overthrown. Smith didn't have a chance to make a play on the ball.
2006 Week 15 vs PIT (10 / 5 / 56 / 0 rec)
Smith led the Panthers in targets, receptions, and yardage, but was visibly frustrated by their struggles on offense. Smith's long reception was a 19 yard catch. He was targeted deep on one occasion, but had to settle for short and medium routes. Smith was the target in the end zone on the Panthers' final offensive play of the game, but Brett Basanez's pass was intercepted.
2006 Week 16 vs ATL (2 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec, 1 / -5 / 0 rush)
Smith was targeted just three times in the game. The first time a pass was thrown his way was not until 9:36 was left in the second quarter. He caught the pass but a false start on Keyshawn Johnson negated the play. Weinke tried to hit him deep down field twice but both attempts were incomplete. Smith should have had one of them but he bobbled it while going out of bounds before gaining control. He also tried an end around but lost five yards on the play.
2006 Week 17 vs NO (8 / 7 / 85 / 2 rec, 1 / 21 / 0 rush)
As is the case in most games for the Panthers, Steve Smith was the star. The guy must be fed the ball because he's a threat to score on every play. Delhomme went his way eight times and Smith was able to catch seven of them for 85 yards. He scored two touchdowns with the second one being the game winner. He had another catch that he took down to the two yard line before being pushed out. Overall, five of his seven catches went for first downs and he also added another first down on a reverse that went for 21 yards.
2005 Week 1 vs NO (13 / 8 / 138 / 1 rec)
Smith looked extremely impressive in his first regular season game after last season's leg injury. He caught the first ball thrown his way on a fade pattern for a 24 yard gain. This catch was followed up by his lone touchdown reception of the day - a short comeback route caught at Saints' 22 yard line on which he broke a tackle and then waltzed into the end zone. Throughout the rest of the afternoon, Smith and Delhomme showed uncanny chemistry, connecting six times for 138 yards. Smith made several incredibly acrobatic catches. He also had a touchdown catch nullified at the end of the first half due to illegal touching. His 16 total targets included three targets in the end zone, not including his touchdown. Two of these targets were passes on which he made incredible catches, but was ruled out of bounds. Smith was also used as a punt returner.
2005 Week 2 vs NE (6 / 4 / 34 / 0 rec)
Smith caught four of the five balls thrown to him, but also struggled to make the big plays we're accustomed to seeing him make. He was targeted in the end zone, but Delhomme put a little too much on it and it fell incomplete. Smith had a productive day returning punts, with a 10.4 yard average, including a 21 yard return. He returned one punt 77 yards for a touchdown, but it was called back for a holding penalty.
2005 Week 3 vs MIA (15 / 11 / 170 / 3 rec, 2 / -2 / 0 rush)
Smith had a career day and was far and away Jake Delhomme's favorite target. It didn't matter where Smith lined up or what type of route he ran, Delhomme found him, 11 times for 170 yards and three trips to the end zone. Smith's 53 yard touchdown in the fourth quarter was a testament to his scoring desire as he accelerated through the middle of the field, swatting a would-be tackler to the ground.
2005 Week 4 vs GB (4 / 2 / 12 / 0 rec)
Smith was a major disappointment after a huge week three. He was the primary concern of the Packers' secondary and it was reflected in his stats. They focused on shutting him down and were very successful in doing so.
2005 Week 5 vs ARI (12 / 8 / 119 / 2 rec)
Smith provided a huge spark to the team when he took a screen pass 65 yards for a touchdown, and later added a four yard catch for a second touchdown. Smith is clearly the playmaker on this team, and the guy Delhomme looks to when he is in trouble, as Smith always seems to find a way to create separation with his speed in running routes and especially after the catch.
2005 Week 6 vs DET (9 / 6 / 123 / 1 rec)
Once again Steve Smith was the favorite target of Jake Delhomme, seeing ten of his 25 passing attempts. He made his longest career touchdown reception in the second quarter of play. It was a sharp pass over the middle and poor tackling by the Lions freed him up and he outran the rest of the Lions' defenders. Later in the game, Smith had a lateral pass go right through his hands.
2005 Week 8 vs MIN (11 / 11 / 201 / 1 rec)
Smith set career and team records with 201 receiving yards in the game. He humiliated the Vikings' pass defense, mostly cornerback Fred Smoot, on his was to the record setting afternoon. Smith beat Smoot on short passes, medium and deep attempts and left the Vikings' defender shaking his head. He finished the game with 11 receptions for 201 and a touchdown. Smith's touchdown went for 13 yards as he beat Smoot to the inside on a slant pattern that left him open for the score. He was close to scoring on two other opportunities, once when he was ruled down at the one yard line when his knee touched and a second when Smoot was called for a penalty and Smith was wide open with no defender in sight but the pass was overthrown.
2005 Week 9 vs TB (8 / 5 / 106 / 1 rec)
The Panthers have targeted Smith on 40% of their passing plays this season. That is by far the biggest ratio of any receiver in the league. Smith had his fourth consecutive 100 yard receiving day, and his sixth of the season. He had a 14 yard catch for a first down on the opening drive, and then an 18 yard reception on the next drive on third and twelve. Smith was forced out of bounds inside the five yard line and drew a penalty on a late hit. He was targeted in the end zone but caught the pass well out of bounds. He showed good strength and broke tackles on several occasions, especially on a 23 yard reception in the second half. His biggest catch of the day was a 35 yard touchdown when he broke clear of Ronde Barber before making the catch. It was only the third passing touchdown allowed by the Buccaneers all season. Despite his heavy workload, Smith continues to return punts. His two returns amounted to a total of 41 yards.
2005 Week 10 vs NYJ (6 / 3 / 34 / 0 rec)
Smith had a very quiet day, catching just three balls for 34 yards. Carolina was in control of the running game and Jets DB Ty Law covered Smith tight all afternoon. Smith was unable to get open deep like he had in previous weeks, and his streak of four consecutive games of 100 yards receiving came to an end.
2005 Week 11 vs CHI (20 / 14 / 169 / 0 rec)
Smith did all he could do to keep the Panthers in this game. Of his 19 targets he caught 14 balls for 169 yards. A number of his catches came on short slants and screen passes at the line of scrimmage that he turned into positive yards. He did have a couple of outstanding grabs leaping into double coverage and pulling the ball in.
2005 Week 12 vs BUF (4 / 3 / 55 / 0 rec)
After seeing approximately 40% of the targets entering the game, Smith was used sparingly. He caught a short pass on third and five on the Panthers' third drive, before beating the defender for a nine yard gain and a first down. Smith did not catch the ball again until the Panthers' second drive of the second half. He made another good move to gain 14 yards after the catch for a 17 yard gain and a first down. Delhomme went straight back to him for the Panthers' biggest play of the game, as Smith leaped high to bring in a 29 yard pass. Smith's 55 receiving yards helped him to 1161 yards for the season, a career best. Smith also returned four punts for a total of 45 yards.
2005 Week 13 vs ATL (11 / 7 / 65 / 1 rec)
Smith's first target was a deep ball to the end zone on the Panthers' second drive. Through the rest of the first half Smith was targeted on quick hitches for short gains. The Falcons' cornerbacks were lining up seven to ten yards off the line of scrimmage. Eventually Atlanta got wise and CB DeAngelo Hall attempted to jump the route. He picked the right play, but missed the tackle. Smith broke away and scampered down the left sideline for the touchdown. Smith opened the third quarter with a 13 yard catch on a crossing pattern. He used his speed to separate away from Hall on the play making it an easy throw for QB Jake Delhomme. On the next play Smith was targeted on a deep post. The pass hit him in the arms, but Smith didn't appear to be ready for the ball. Smith also dropped a ball early in the fourth quarter on a crossing route in the red zone.
2005 Week 14 vs TB (8 / 5 / 103 / 0 rec)
Smith opened the game with pulling in a short hitch against CB Ken Lucas. Lucas missed the tackle and allowed Smith to sprint down the sideline for 23 yards. His second reception was a similar play, but Smith couldn't break free. In the second quarter Smith took a huge hit on a crossing route. Smith stayed on the field for a bit catching his breath after taking the shoulder to his upper chest. Smith got the Panthers' offense going in the second half. He made a nice catch on the sideline and turned it up field for 60 yards. The cornerback took a bad angle on the play possibly thinking interception and allowed Smith to break free for the big gain. After the defense did their job Smith followed up his big reception with a great 44 yard punt return. Smith was the only Carolina wide receiver to be targeted in the first three quarters of the game.
2005 Week 15 vs NO (9 / 6 / 85 / 1 rec, 1 / 20 / 1 rush)
Smith continues to put up great numbers week after week and this game was no different. He did not get into the flow of the passing game until the second quarter but found the end zone on a first quarter end around from 20 yards away. Smith's great speed allowed him to break away down the left sideline, as he leaped for the end zone he was knocked out of bounds but the officials ruled he had broken the plane of the goal line. The score was the first rushing touchdown of his career. Smith and Delhomme chipped away with short completions before hitting one deep for a 33 yard gain late in the third quarter that put Carolina in the red zone. Two plays later, Delhomme threw a bullet to Smith on the slant route, Smith made two spin moves on his way to the end zone for a 15 yard touchdown. With that catch, Smith set a single season franchise record with 1,414 receiving yards. Smith led the Panthers' with six receptions for 85 yards, one carry for 20 yards and two touchdowns. Fox announcers reported in the first half that Smith was not feeling well and may have been dehydrated but the apparent illness did not seem to affect his performance in the game.
2005 Week 16 vs DAL (2 / 1 / 18 / 0 rec)
The Cowboys' defense focused their efforts on stopping Smith today by double-teaming him on nearly every Carolina snap. He was able to work free on occasion and really showed his frustration when QB Jake Delhomme didn't find him. Smith made an excellent heads-up play when he picked up a Delhomme fumble and advanced it for positive yards. At the end of the play, Smith was thrown to the ground out of bounds by a Dallas defender, lost his temper and was ejected from the game for grabbing an official. Smith made only one catch for 18 yards during his three quarters of play.
2005 Week 17 vs ATL (12 / 9 / 131 / 1 rec, 1 / 7 / 0 rush)
Smith was nearly the entire passing offense for Carolina, catching nine of 14 passes from QB Jake Delhomme before the Panther starters left the game. Smith caught six passes for 98 yards in the second quarter, highlighted by a 42 yards touchdown catch. He also lost a six yard touchdown as it was reviewed and overturned to where he was down at the one yard line. Smith's nine catches gave him 103 for the season, breaking the Carolina team record for receptions in a season formerly held by WR Muhsin Muhammad. Smith's 131 yards put him over 100 yards for the ninth time this season, also a club record. He also scored his 12th touchdown of the year.