Carr= backup for Delhomme


Aug 13, 2006
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(April 6, 2007) -- A month after he was released by the Houston Texans, David Carr agreed to a two-year deal to play for the Carolina Panthers.

Carr, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2002 draft, will serve as Jake Delhomme's backup.

"It's a case where we were obviously looking for someone to come in back up Jake and the opportunity to get a quarterback the caliber of David in free agency is unique," Panthers general manager Marty Hurney said. "We thought it was a good situation and a good opportunity for us."

Carr was a five-year starter for the expansion Texans. He completed 60 percent of his passes, but threw 65 interceptions and was sacked 249 times. Carr completed a career-high 68.3 percent of his passes last season, but was released by the Texans after they obtained Matt Schaub in a trade from Atlanta and anointed him as their starting quarterback.

The Panthers believe Carr's troubles stemmed from Houston's poor offensive line, and tried to sign him during his visit with the team early in the week. Carr left without a contract and visited Seattle, while Carolina brought in former Miami quarterback Joey Harrington for a visit.

But on Thursday Carr decided he wanted to sign with Carolina, and the two sides reached a deal over the phone early Friday morning, ending a nervous period for Hurney.

"He met everybody and met Jake and I think he felt comfortable," Hurney said. "You never know what happens when he leaves without a contract. But we felt good about him I think he felt good about us and he made the decision to come here."

The Panthers were looking for an experienced quarterback to back up Delhomme after releasing Chris Weinke last month. Weinke struggled in a relief role in three games last season when Delhomme had a sprained thumb, throwing two touchdown passes and four interceptions. The Panthers went 1-2 in those three games and the lone game they won came with Weinke throwing only seven passes.

The 6-foot-3 Carr may have had other opportunities to start with other teams, but Hurney insisted Carr will back up Delhomme, who struggled last season as the Panthers finished disappointing 8-8.

"We made it clear and he knows that Jake Delhomme is our starting quarterback," Hurney said. "I think it was important for him to come to a winning organization and a place where he thinks has a chance to win. He knows that Jake is our starter. Every player wants to play, but he knows the role he's coming into."

The move means the Panthers now have the top two picks from the 2002 draft. Carolina selected defensive end Julius Peppers with No. 2 pick.

Carr's signing is the biggest move the Panthers have made so far in free agency. Hurney has said they were content with 21 of 22 starters returning next season.