The Carolina Panthers likely won't have wide receiver Steve Smith for Sunday's season finale in Atlanta, but he could be back for the playoffs. Coach Ron Rivera announced on Monday that Smith sprained his PCL during Carolina's win over New Orleans and that Smith would be highly doubtful to play this week.

"It was very good news considering the alternative," Rivera said. "Where he sprained it and how lack of severity there was, that was all positive news. It really was. And I'm excited and very happy with Steve."

Smith's status is week-to-week at this point, which makes Sunday's game in Atlanta big for the Panthers. If Carolina can beat the Falcons without Smith, the Panthers would earn a first-round bye, which would give their star wide receiver an extra week to heal.