Free Agency Focus: Chris Carr

Now that we’re getting closer to football resuming, I wanted to resume my free agency focus list.  First on the list was Stephen Tulloch, next up is Chris Carr.

Carr is an attractive player for the Lions to pursue due to his position being a great need, his familiarity with the defense from his time in Tennessee and his versatility.  Carr has started at cornerback, nickel back, dime back, kick returner and has covered kicks.

Carr is 28, which makes him young enough to be a building block rather than a stop gap and his price tag will be significantly lower than Nnamdi Asomugha, who has recently been linked to the Lions courtesy of

There has been a theme with my first two free agent targets, and that is familiarity with the system.  The Lions are more likely to target players that can easily transition into starting roles without the benefit of a full offseason. 

The Lions pursued Chris Carr in 2009 after Coach Schwartz was hired, but he chose to go to Baltimore instead because he wasn’t interested in a rebuilding project.  Carr was a nickel and dime corner for most of 2009, but was elevated to a starting role late in the season and for all of 2010 due to injuries and he played well as a starter.  The biggest dowside to Carr is he’s very similar to Chris Houston in the regard that he doesn’t have elite ball skills.  Carr doesn’t pick off or break up many passes, which could be problematic if he signs and starts opposite Chris Houston.

What separates average cornerbacks from great cornerbacks is the ability to locate the football and make plays on it.  How many times have you seen a corner running stride for stride with a receiver but the pass is completed because the corner couldn’t locate the ball?

Chris Carr would be a nice addition for the Lions because he could potentially be a starter, but can fill several roles and won’t break the bank.  In fact, he should be affordable enough for the Lions to add an additional corner to compete for a starting job as well.

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