Apr 9, 2007
I’m not in love with David Carr to the Panthers. The move does make some sense, since the team is becoming more and more disenchanted with starter Jake Delhomme, who will be 32 this year, and Carr is a young QB who has the physical tools to be an impact starter.
Early in the season last year, he looked improved, and the coaching staff was seemingly doing a great job with him. But then he started to regress, and as we know the Texans gave up on him. Carr certainly took a beating in Houston, and that slowed his development – but it might have ruined it. Carr just doesn’t see things well enough. He doesn’t have good timing, anticipation, so he throws a lot of 5-yard passes. I don’t know if he can process information quickly enough.
True, he should be in a better situation in Carolina, behind a better line, and if the Panthers can run the ball as well as they want to, Carr should be protected well and the team should be able to pick it spots with him in the passing game and put him in a good position to succeed. But my biggest problem with Carr in Carolina is WR Steve Smith. WR Andre Johnson was able to catch 103 balls with Carr in 2006, but for only 1147 yards. Carr occasionally completed some long balls to Johnson (and he looked like he was throwing up a shot put in the process), but too many of those 103 completions were shorter, conservative passes, and Johnson is a much better and easier target to throw to than Smith. Delhomme’s gunslinger mentality may get him in trouble at times, but it also enabled him to get the ball to Smith a lot, and get it to him deep.
I just can’t envision Smith putting up big numbers with Carr on board, and I don’t know how anyone else can, based on what we’ve seen from Carr. So, for Smith’s sake, I hope the addition of Carr reigns Delhomme in a little bit and helps him focus on playing more consistent football. If he does, Carr won’t be a threat because Delhomme is a better player. But if Delhomme starts losing games for the Panthers, the team might make a switch.
And if you thought John Fox was conservative before, wait until you see him with David Carr as his starter.