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January 10, 2014

Smith's knee remains a question mark

Panthers receiver Steve Smith on Friday again was giving random "percentages" about the strength of his sprained left knee and the odds that he'll play Sunday against San Francisco.

But the bottom line is this: The questions about Smith's effectiveness won't be answered until Sunday when he takes the field against the 49ers.

Smith jokingly said there's an 89 percent chance he'll play, a number he decided on because it also happens to be his jersey number.

But when the crowd of reporters thinned out around his locker later Friday, Smith conceded his knee didn't feel particularly good Thursday.

"I'm going to just play ball. That's all I'm going to do, is play ball," Smith said. "Like I said, yesterday I didn't do as well as I expected. And that's life."

Smith said it was hard to gauge his status Friday because he only ran about five routes because he was concerned about aggravating the injury -- a sprained posterior collateral ligament -- in the rain.

With the Panthers scheduled only for a walkthrough Saturday, Smith indicated the next time he tests his knee would be in the pre-game Sunday.

Wide receiver Ted Ginn Jr. said there's a different energy in the stadium when Smith is in the game.

"He's our LeBron. He brings something to the table that a lot of guys don't," Ginn said. "We're just going to go out and be happy to have whatever he brings.”

--Joseph Person

Posted by Observer Sports on January 10, 2014 at 02:16 PM | Permalink


Knowing Smitty, can't help but wonder if he's sandbagging. I could just see him going out in the Pre-game limping around like he can barely walk and then burn the 49er's on his first pass route.

You just never know with 89.

Posted by: John | Jan 10, 2014 3:16:39 PM

agree. Something tells me he will be fine...may even throw us for a loop and go old school returning kicks...who knows with 89!

Posted by: Me | Jan 10, 2014 3:23:28 PM

Wow, this really does not sound good at all...

Posted by: Ryan | Jan 10, 2014 3:23:48 PM

I hope he can go, but in the grand scheme it has not been our offense that has brought us to this point, it is the D. As long as Luke, TD and the line play well, it will be what our last three games have been, anybody's game with two minutes to go. Maybe Cam can throw up another hail Mary and we can get through it.

Posted by: Not again! | Jan 10, 2014 3:43:35 PM

Y'all...seriously...can you not see that this is trickery? Smith will 100% be playing on Sunday. He's playing a game with the media and everyone else.

Posted by: Josh | Jan 10, 2014 3:56:54 PM

Jeez,I hope Smitty's better by Sunday, but more so I hope he doesn't injure himself further. Time for the younger, uninjured players to step up until he's right. LEGGO!!!!

Posted by: DC Heel | Jan 10, 2014 4:20:16 PM

Yeah i think Smitty might be sandbaging a bit to try and throw the niners off. I think he's going to be close to 100% if not 100 completely lets get this win

Posted by: derek | Jan 10, 2014 5:04:49 PM

Prediction: First play from scrimmage, deep pass to Smitty. Wouldn't THAT be a hoot?

Posted by: John | Jan 10, 2014 6:55:36 PM

Seriously, win or lose... many thanks to everyone at the Panthers for making us think about anything but the draft or a coaching change in January! This has been a GREAT season! One of the best in the history of the franchise!

Posted by: John | Jan 10, 2014 6:57:37 PM

If you have followed Steve through his career you know he never gives a straight answer. He will do it on the field. Media suckers.

Posted by: Jimcat | Jan 11, 2014 12:18:59 AM

If you have followed Steve through his career you know he never gives a straight answer. He will do it on the field. Media suckers.

Posted by: Jimcat | Jan 11, 2014 12:18:59 AM

Ok Panthers fans, let them say we are the underdogs. They say he who laugh last laugh the loudest, we will be laughing all the way to the Super Bowl.Steve as I said before is my favorite WR, we have to think positive, we need to win with him or without him. We are paying more than 1 WR. I'm sure he will give his all if he does play. I think a QB or two pulled that stunt before the playoffs, wasn't Rogers hurt before the playoff. They just shoot Manning up with some drugs and let him keep playing. Carolina drug this weekend will be HYPE. GO PANTHERS

Posted by: BRENDA | Jan 11, 2014 7:02:49 AM

Niners win by 17. Ya heard it here first.

Posted by: madd_balla | Jan 12, 2014 1:29:44 AM

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