NFL News: Panthers’ Steve Smith blames Chudzinski for 2012 season

Every week in the NFL beat writers for every team are included in a conference call with the opposing team’s coach and one of their players. The Carolina Panthers play the Seattle Seahawks opening weekend, and veteran wide receiver Steve Smith was the Panther selected to answer questions from the Seattle media. Some of his remarks didn’t paint a friendly picture of new Browns head coach Rob Chudzinski.

“The prior offensive coordinator [Chudzinski] really was positioning himself to just apply for that head coaching job,” Smith said Wednesday on a conference call with Seattle Seahawks reporters. “I think our offense suffered a little bit because of that.”

Smith, 34, a five-time Pro Bowler, felt Chudzinski had the Panthers get away from some of their strengths last season.

“At times, we got cute,” Smith said. “We did things that weren’t necessarily us, like the underutilizing of [running back] Mike Tolbert. But we’re out of that. The past is the past.” [Blount/ESPN]

Smith caught 73 passes for 1,174 yards and 4 touchdowns last season for the Panthers. Carolina was 12th in total offense, 16th in passing  and 9th in rushing. They averaged 22.3 points per game.

[Related: Barkevious Mingo joins teammates practicing in pads]

  • Natedawg86


  • Guest1111

    Chud is the same O-Coordinator that was infamous for calling plays where the receivers ran 9 yard routes on 3rd and 10s…

    This doesn’t surprise me in the least and I really, really hope he lets his coordinators run the show.

  • FearTheRoo

    Did any other team even consider Chud as a HC, ever? Not saying he’s a bad coach, just don’t remember him being a big name this past offseason.

  • Tommy

    So what’s the excuse going to be when they suck again this year?


    Nothing makes me chuckle like someone throwing another person under the bus for something that happened, and then dropping in “the past is the past”. Clearly, this is why you felt it necessary to take a shot at him, because you’re over it and it’s in the past.

  • MallaLubba

    Did a wide receiver in the NFL just say that the running back should have gotten the ball more!?

  • woofersus

    A lot of offensive coordinators have called plays where the receivers ran 9 yard routes on 3rd and 10’s for a variety of reasons. I’m not sure Chud is particularly infamous. I do know that the Browns had their best offensive season in decades under him. (most points since 1966 and 8th ranked offense in the NFL) I hope he’ll let he coordinators do their jobs too, because he’s a first year head coach and because Norv Turner is a good OC, but I don’t think Chud is an offensive liability.

  • Right, he was auditioning for a HC job by making sure he was holding down his current offensive players. Do these guys even think before words come out of their mouths?

  • Garry_Owen

    Thanks for that, Mr. Smith. We are all a little dumber now.

  • Natedawg86

    Blame it on the rain, yeah yeah

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Don’t b vanilli dawg!


    Do receivers bear any culpability for running 9 yard routes on 3rd and 10? What about the old adage of “you have to know where the sticks are”?

  • CB Everett

    NFL blowhard ahole WR logic: When you can’t possibly blame yourself or your current teammates (Cam), someone needs to take the blame–and it’s the coach who left.

  • bossman09

    Perhaps there is an actual reason why teams have a <30% conversation rate on 3rd and 10. I know this could be Rocket Surgery, but perhaps the defense KNOWS you need 10 yards and drops 5DBs (they even have term for this!) so that no one is open beyond 9 yards. BOOM! my head just exploded from this realization!!!!
    Next thing you are going to tell us is that if the QB jus threw the ball into the endzone, we would get a TD every offensive snap. Brilliant!
    BTW, I would certainly take a 9 yard route on 3rd and 10 compared to the 3 yard crossing routes that we had last year. By comparison, Chud would be 300% better than Shurmur.

  • Vindictive_Pat

    Yes, he interviewed with 3 teams for their HC job the offseason prior to last season.

  • Toddyus

    This is a classic move I’ve seen in the corporate world. As soon as someone of responsibility leaves, every bad decision/execution becomes the fault of the guy that isn’t there to defend himself.

  • Chris Mc

    A 3rd string running back, at that. Important distinction there.

  • MallaLubba

    Up is down. Black is white.
    “Human sacrifices, dogs and cats living together! Mass hysteria!”

  • Wow

    Someone sure is bitter

  • brownie19

    Boo hoo…always blame someone else

  • Old Coach

    Rocket surgery????