Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti doesn't rule out Steve Smith's return

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Baltimore Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti half-jokingly said he hasn't ruled out wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. coming out of retirement and playing in 2017.

"I haven't given up hope that Steve Smith is going to come walking in here in September," Bisciotti said with a smile. "We'll see about that character. I wouldn't count him out."

Smith didn't change his stance after hearing Bisciotti's comments.

“Man, I’m retired,” Smith told Fox Sports 1. “I sent that paperwork to Roger Goodell January 2.”

Smith officially filed for retirement on Jan. 2, sending a letter to Goodell. He wrote that he "will no longer be antagonizing defensive backs."

Heading into last season's finale, Smith left open the possibility that he could return, saying he was "89 percent sure" he was retiring. Then, after the 27-10 loss at Cincinnati on Jan. 1, he essentially took his final bow when he said, "I enjoyed it, but it's over and it's done."

Smith is one of the fiercest competitors in the NFL and came back last season after announcing his retirement before the 2015 season. Toward the end of last season, Ravens coach John Harbaugh said Smith was absolutely welcome to come back and wide receiver Mike Wallace tried to get Smith to delay retirement another year.

Despite being the NFL's oldest receiver, Smith didn't show much decline in his game. Last season, Smith finished third on the team with 70 catches, second with 799 yards receiving and first with five touchdown catches.