The Cowboys’ defense is better this year. Brandon Carr, unfortunately, is the same.
For a $50 million free agent, you’d expect consistency to be a positive. But with the Cowboys’ No. 1 cornerback it’s an average, non-impactful negative.
He’s not horrendous. You don’t see the back of his No. 39 trailing receivers into end zones on a weekly basis. He just doesn’t make plays. Plays that stop a drive. Plays that turn momentum. Plays that … well, matter.
Without Sean Lee, this defense doesn’t have a star. But it should have a clear-cut best player. For reasons we can’t really explain - other than a dreadful overestimation of his talent - Carr just isn’t that guy. Orlando Scandrick is a better cornerback, and that’s a shame.
Carr has been the Cowboys’ highest-paid cornerback since 2012. Quick, rattle off his signature plays.
Right, there was the interception and return inside the 5 that won the overtime game against the Steelers in ’12. And there’ve been two interception returns for touchdowns, in a rout of the Eagles in ’12 and the clincher in a season-opening win over the Giants in ’13.
But since? Nada. Carr hasn’t picked off a pass this year and suddenly he’s gone 16 games without one. And, really, I can’t remember when he was close. Think about that. Cowboys’ opponents have thrown 989 passes since one was intercepted by Carr.
He doesn’t surrender an inordinate amount of big plays, evidenced by allowing just four touchdowns. But his lack of big plays – amazingly, only three pass breakups – isn’t coming close to balancing the scales.
The Cowboys have been good this season. But them to make the playoffs, Carr has to play better.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.