Inside the Panthers

Steve Smith’s classic retirement letter to the NFL lets DBs off the hook

Former Panthers receiver Steve Smith announced his retirement from the NFL on Friday.
Former Panthers receiver Steve Smith announced his retirement from the NFL on Friday. jsiner@charlotteobserver.com

Former Carolina Panthers receiver Steve Smith made his retirement official Friday, tweaking the NFL and his past opponents on the way out the door.

In a letter to commissioner Roger Goodell, Smith wrote: “This is to notify you that as of today I, Steve Smith Sr., will no longer be antagonizing defensive backs. I am retiring from the National Football League.”

Smith, 37, who spent the last three seasons with the Baltimore (he missed several games in 2015 with a ruptured Achilles tendon), played the first 13 seasons of his career with the Panthers.

The question now becomes whether Smith might sign a one-day contract and retire as a Panther.

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