Steve Smith likes playing against the Bears. One reason is that he doesn't think much of their defensive backs.
For the second straight game at Soldier Field, Smith reached the 100-yard plateau, in his mind because what he was facing in cornerback Tim Jennings and safety Chris Conte aren't his equals.
During the first half, Smith was seen jawing with Conte, but he dismissed both that idea and Conte.
"No, weren't jawing," a frustrated Smith said. "There's nothing for me to jaw with. What's his number? 47?" I know he plays for the Bears, but he's not on my level. Sorry. You can go interview him, though."
The criticism towards the Bears secondary didn't end there. Smith decided to take a shot at NFL interception leader Jennings.
"That [touchdown] was the best play he made all game on me, but it was a key moment and changed the momentum," Smith said. "I know you want to pump him up, but I've been kicking his ass every time I come up here and today was no different."
It was Jennings that had the last laugh once again on Sunday. His one touchdown against the Panthers is one more than Smith has had in last two meetings against the Bears.
Though Jennings took a different tack when discussing what it was like to go up against a Pro Bowl receiver in Smith Sunday afternoon.
"He's a Pro Bowl receiver," Jennings said. "He's been doing this for a while, he's going to make some plays. I had to step-up to the challenge and minimize his ability."