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Rumors of possible Steve Smith trade, jersey missing from online team store

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Steve Smith (Photo source: Panthers.com) Steve Smith (Photo source: Panthers.com)
CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

The rumor mill is swirling about the future of veteran football player Steve Smith with the Carolina Panthers.

Smith is a wide receiver with the team who has been with the team since 2001. After 13 seasons with the team, some are questioning if the 34-year-old is worth the $7 million cap.

NFL insiders say the team is attempting to trade Smith to another team before the 2014 season.

Fueling the rumors, even more, is the apparent removal of Smith's jersey from the online team store.

Associated Press sports writer Steve Reed tweeted that a Panthers spokesman says "we shouldn't read anything into Smith's jerseys not being on sale. Steve is transitioning name to 'Smith Sr'."

On February 7, Smith posted an ultrasound on Instagram saying "It's official. This year the name on the back of my jersey will read... Smith Sr."

Steve Smith has been a hot topic on WBTV's "The Point After" since Panthers' General Manager Dave Gettleman said Smith was part of the team's evaluation process.

The comments sparked a debate: Will Smith remain a Panther... and should he?

On Sunday night's "The Point After", Smith's teammate DeAngelo Williams was listening when a caller said Smith was past his prime.

Williams called in to the show and backed up Smith.

"He's still shown the playmaking ability that a lot of people say has diminished," Williams told WBTV. "He just, he continues to do things that people say he can't do and defy the odds. So to get rid of this guy would be crazy and absurd."

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