CHARLOTTE - The Carolina Panthers have signed Wide receiver Steve Smith, one of 36 players in NFL history to reach 10,000 yards, to a three-year contract extension.
Smith, who will celebrate his 33rd birthday next month, returned to Pro Bowl form in 2011 following a pair of relatively quiet seasons.
With a helping hand from rookie quarterback Cam Newton, Smith ranked fifth in the NFL with 1,394 receiving yards, his highest yardage total since 2008. He caught 79 balls - best since 2007 - and scored seven touchdowns.
In Week 14 against the Atlanta Falcons, Smith became the 35th player in NFL history to reach 10,000 receiving yards. He ended the season ranked 32nd on the NFL's all-time list.
Smith's strong season allowed him to pass Muhsin Muhammad as the franchise's all-time leader in receptions and receiving yards. Smith, a third-round draft pick out of Utah, has 699 career receptions for 10,278 yards and 67 total touchdowns (59 receiving, six on returns, two rushing).