The Dallas Cowboys could use some snarl. They could also use another wide receiver, even if it probably is a bit low on the list of priorities this season, as they cut Miles Austin at the start of free agency.
Add it up, and at least pursuing Steve Smith would make a lot of sense for Jerry Jones and company.
Remember, Smith was cut by his long-time team, the Carolina Panthers, this offseason. From the team's official Twitter account:
The #Panthers have released WR Steve Smith.— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) March 13, 2014
But what is interesting is that before Smith was cut, the Cowboys were reportedly on a list of teams to which he would have accepted a trade, via Joe Person of The Charlotte Observer:
Steve Smith gave Panthers list of 5 teams as trade partners--Dallas, NE, Baltimore, San Diego, Tampa Bay, per source. http://t.co/OQC6IRnXgO— Joe Person (@josephperson) March 13, 2014
Smith is probably going to want to earn a decent paycheck, even at 34 years of age, so he might ultimately price himself out of the Cowboys, who have a nice start at the position in Dez Bryant and Terrance Williams.
And it's questionable whether Smith has that much left in the tank. He still had a solid season for the Panthers, but he's far from being the game-breaking No. 1 receiver he once was.
Here is his route tree from a season ago, via Pro Football Focus:
With Steve Smith hitting the free agent market, here's a look at his route chart from last season pic.twitter.com/0WuYhor9oa— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) March 13, 2014
But if Smith was willing to come to Dallas at a reasonable rate and was willing to play the role of the team's No. 3 receiver while mentoring the younger Bryant and Williams, he would be a great asset to have. He would certainly bring a fiery nature to a team that has often lacked one in recent seasons.
If you doubt that Smith will have something to prove next season, well, consider these comments he made after being released, via Person:
He told WFNZ-AM on Thursday he has stayed in shape and will continue his career elsewhere.
“And if that happens to run through Bank of America Stadium,” Smith said, “put your goggles on because there's going to be blood and guts everywhere.”
For what it's worth, the Cowboys don't play the Panthers next season. So unless they meet in the playoffs, the blood and guts will remain in their proper place.
He also talked to Bleacher Report radio about moving on, which you can listen to here.
It's probably not a move that Cowboys fans are clamoring for, as fixing a dreadful defense is a huge priority. But Smith is the type of veteran addition that would make sense for the Cowboys.
You can safely accuse the Cowboys of lacking heart at times last season. With Smith, you don't just get heart, you might end up getting blood and guts, too.