National Sports Briefs: Smith suffers concussion
SPARTANBURG, S.C. ó The Carolina Panthers have returned to training camp without top receiver Steve Smith, who sustained a concussion in the preseason opener.
Smith did not practice Monday morning. Coach John Fox said only that he’s day-to-day.
Smith was shaken up after making a leaping 19-yard catch in the first quarter of Saturday’s 23-20 overtime win against Indianapolis. He continued to play, but quarterback Matt Moore said he knew something was wrong with Smith.
The receiver was suspended for the first two regular-season games for breaking teammate Ken Lucas’ nose in a fight during practice this month. Lucas did conditioning drills on an adjacent field Monday, but is still not cleared to practice after he underwent a procedure last week to set his nose.
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. ó Jacksonville Jaguars receiver Matt Jones pleaded not guilty Monday to possession of cocaine, a charge that carries up to 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
Jones, who is free on a $2,500 bond, returned to Jacksonville, Fla., on Monday in time to show up at the Jaguars’ practice that evening. He faces an Oct. 10 trial date ó two days before the Jaguars play at Denver.
The 25-year-old Jones, a former Arkansas Razorback quarterback who was taken in the first round by Jacksonville in 2005, was arrested July 10 when a Fayetteville police officer saw him inside a car allegedly cutting up cocaine with a credit card.
Jones’ father, Steve, has denied the cocaine was in his son’s possession. He acknowledged it was in the vehicle, however, and in “closest proximity to Matt.”
LATROBE, Pa. ó The Pittsburgh Steelers signed veteran quarterback Byron Leftwich, choosing the former Jacksonville Jaguars starter over Daunte Culpepper, a three-time Pro Bowl player.
Pittsburgh needed a backup for Ben Roethlisberger after veteran Charlie Batch broke his right collarbone in Friday night’s 16-10 preseason victory over the Philadelphia Eagles. Batch, who had surgery Monday, is expected to miss four to six weeks.
CHARLOTTE ó The Charlotte Bobcats have traded second-round pick Kyle Weaver to Oklahoma City for a 2009 second-round choice.Weaver was the 38th overall pick in June after averaging 12.2 points as a senior at Washington State.
Weaver averaged 6.2 points in five games for Charlotte in the Las Vegas summer league, but faced stiff competition to make Charlotte’s 15-man regular-season roster.
LOS ANGELES ó The Los Angeles Kings agreed to terms on a three-year, entry-level contract with defenseman Drew Doughty, the second overall pick in the 2008 draft.
The 18-year-old Doughty had 13 goals and 37 assists in 58 regular-season games for Guelph of the Ontario Hockey League last season.
COLUMBIA, S.C. ó Clemson has taken its first big hit of the football season.
Tigers coach Tommy Bowden said Monday that starting defensive tackle Rashaad Jackson would be lost at least until midseason after suffering a torn quad tendon in his knee at last weekend’s scrimmage. Jackson will have surgery today, the school said.
Jackson twisted his knee during Saturday’s workout at Memorial Stadium. The decision on surgery came after reviewing results of an MRI.
– CLEMSON, S.C. ó The lawyer for the woman who accused Clemson safety DeAndre McDaniel of assault says she will not oppose the possibility of the player entering a pre-trial intervention program.
McDaniel was arrested in June and charged with aggravated assault and battery. He has remained in school and part of the football team while the case has progressed.