One piece of good news for the Carolina Panthers on the injury front is that receiver Steve Smith is expected to play tomorrow night against the New York Giants and is listed as probable.
Smith is fully expected to be in gear Thursday, which is great news considering the up-in-the-air status regarding Jonathan Stewart, who has been listed as questionable and will likely not play due to the short week of rest for the Panthers.
Although he was limited on Tuesday, Smith practiced fully today and Ron Rivera said that Smith being listed on the injury report, “is really more of a formality now than anything else.
Days like this remind me why Smith is my favorite player, and that’s because he is a warrior by playing through immense pain and managing to produce at a high level in the presence of it. Smith’s right knee is still tender and sore, but there is no structural damage and Smith is able to play through it.
Look for him to have another big game tomorrow night against the Giants, even if solid veteran corner Corey Webster is shadowing him. The Giants will likely bracket Smith with Kenny Phillips to avoid getting burned by the quick wideout, because Phillips is far better in coverage than Antrel Rolle. Although, that’s more speculation on my part.
Smith was huge against the New Orleans Saints last time out, and I expect another solid output from him even against what should be a tougher match-up for him.
You can follow Joe Soriano on Twitter @SorianoJoe.