The Philadelphia Eagles and Carolina Panthers made a trade on Friday afternoon, with speedy wide receiver Torrey Smith headed to Charlotte.
The Eagles have to clear contracts to get under the salary cap by March 14 — the start of the new league year — and they are well on their way.
After acquiring Michael Bennett on Wednesday from the Seattle Seahawks, general manager Howie Roseman began working toward financial freedom by dealing Torrey Smith to the Carolina Panthers in exchange for cornerback Daryl Worley.
Smith, 29, is the bigger name in this deal but might not be the best player. The Eagles were going to release him anyway, paying no dead money on the final year of his contract, which is good for $5 million in 2018. Last year, Smith caught 36 passes for 430 yards and two touchdowns, helping Philadelphia win its first Super Bowl.
However, Smith has only enjoyed one season with more than 900 receiving yards, doing so in 2013 with the Baltimore Ravens. Since then, Smith has never eclipsed 767 yards in a campaign.
Worley, 23, is still on his rookie deal at the paltry number of $865,724 this year. Look for the former third-round pick out of West Virginia to start alongside Ronald Darby in Philadelphia, giving the Eagles a quality tandem. With the Panthers, Worley appeared in 31 games over two seasons and amassed three interceptions.
All told, Philadelphia essentially got Worley for nothing, as Smith was going to be on the chopping block. For the Panthers, the move is a head-scratchier, considering Smith’s aforementioned decline, and the potential within Worley.