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Free Agent DE Alex Carrington To Visit Steelers Thursday Night


Former Buffalo Bills defensive end Alex Carrington has a Thursday night free agent visit with the Pittsburgh Steelers, acccording to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com.

Carrington, who was orginally selected in the third round of 2010 NFL Draft out of Arkansas State, played only three games last season for the Bills after tearing a quadriceps tendon in a Week 3 game against the New York Jets.

At the 2010 NFL Scouting Combine, Carrington registered a 4.92 40-yard dash time and did 25 reps on the bench.

With the Steelers already losing unrestricted free agent defensive linemen Ziggy Hood and Al Woods to other teams early in free agency, Carrington’s visit is a welcomed sight.

More coming on this after the podcast is recorded.

 

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About Dave Bryan

I am, I'm me. 40 something, retired and a life long Steelers fan.
  • srdan

    How will you fit everything into an hour podcast?

    You know what would be neat-sort of how you bring on journalists from other teams to discuss each weeks game, use those same contacts to discuss FA signing that are brought in. I would like ot hear what a panthers commentator thinks of Mitchel.

    Just a thought.

  • 20Stoney

    Well thats a little sunshine on a cloudy day…..

  • Steelers12328882

    Don’t let him leave!

  • dkoy85

    Don’t know much about him. What is everyone’s thoughts on this? Is he an upgrade?

  • cp72

    That’s good news. Looked it up got good size (6’5″ 290). It also mentioned the Bills tried him at
    linebacker so he must be a decent athlete.

    Maybe throw in Anthony Dixon as a short yardage back and resign Cotchery then on to the draft.

  • Paddy

    Rappaport? He lies

  • James Kling

    Not a lot of experience, but liked him coming out of Arkansas St. in 2010. At the time, thought Tomln’s Ark. St. ties might bring Carrington here. Good KEI (shade under 70), but definitely a developmental guy. Might see him as a similar prospect to Mike Mitchell: let another team draft and coach him up a few, get him on the upswing cheap. Could be an interesting signing, especially since Woods walked for cheap (2/$5M?).

  • Addison

    Stephon Tuiit a reach? Maybe trade up in 2nd if he’s still there. They needed to get this pass rush going yesterday

  • treeher

    Bills moved him to outside linebacker in a 3-4. So he is familiar with that alignment. In 2012 he played in all 16 games as a backup. 19 tackles, two sacks, three passes defensed, one forced fumble, three blocked field goals (!!) and a blocked extra point (!). I’m more concerned about the injury: Complete recovery takes at least 4 months. Most repairs are nearly healed in 6 months. Many patients have reported that they required 12 months before they reached all their goals. If you are a competitive athlete, your surgeon will most likely want to test your leg strength before giving a go-ahead to return to sports. Your surgeon will compare your leg strength using some functional knee testing (like hopping). The goal is that your strength be at least 85-90% of your uninjured side. In addition to leg strength, your surgeon will assess your leg’s endurance, your balance, and if you are having any swelling.

  • James Kling

    Also: BRowns and Rams kicking his tires. Bills like him, felt he showed something, but can’t keep all their DL talent. 44 GP, but only 9 starts; 4 sacks, 6 PD, 53 combined tackles.

  • cencalsteeler

    Great move. It would be a welcomed upgrade to the D line. Plus, the guy can contribute to special teams. I believe he has had 4 blocked kicks. 6’5″ 300+lbs. His arrow is pointing up, as I feel Ziggy’s arrow has plateaued in our scheme.

  • James Kling

    Need to see his numbers at ND’s pro day, didn’t work out at combine. Younger version of Hageman, maybe a better option than Hageman?

  • 243546

    The Bills 3-4 doesn’t look like anything we are used to. It’s really a 5-2, because the OLB’s are primarily used as hand in the dirt DE’s.

  • Steve

    Dave – You kicken the articles out today. Fresh off the vacation.

  • Steelers12328882

    My only questions would be, would he cost more than what Al Woods received from the Titans, and do the Steelers see him as having more upside than the guy we spent 2 years grooming?

  • Ray

    Carrington would play the five technique

  • Virdin Barzey

    Agree that Ziggy was not working in our scheme but to let Al Woods go is silly. They would have at least a backup if this guys injury flared up. Now the cupboard is bare.
    Always trust the Steelers, since they know better than any of us but its a real head scratcher.

  • Bill Sechrengost

    This is the type of guy they need for their defense. Then they can draft another DE to groom for the future, maybe Taylor Hart, Oregon, Brent Urban, Virginia, Josh Mauro, Stanford. Plenty of quality DE in mid rounds.

  • Addison

    Wasn’t he a big reason Teo looked so good 2 years ago.

  • treeher

    Yeah, I thought that after last year, Woods’s star was on the rise.

  • Addison

    Does anyone have a opinion on weather this draft is deep in 3-4 DE or not.

  • http://batman-news.com steellife007

    I was hoping we were going to get him in the mid rds the yr he came out in the draft bc I thought he would develop in our system nicely…..hopefully if the get him he will.

  • cp72

    Think there could be some decent guys there in round two. Ego Ferguson, Anthony Johnson are both 5 technique candidates. Tuitt would be a steal in round two and would be ideal.

  • Reg Sayhitodabadguy Hunt

    Lol thats kidnapping but i agree we are the stealers

  • cencalsteeler

    Woods has been bounced around the league a few times and twice by the Steelers. Yes, he showed some flashes this season when he played, but that was with an 8-8 team. The Steelers are not going to pay a backup the money the Titans offered. We have Williams and Arnfelt in our back pocket. Plus, we’re at day 3 of free agency. If Woods was tearing things up and producing big time stats, I’d scratch my head, too. But, really? It’s time to upgrade our roster, not stagnate it.

  • 804Stiller

    Although I think Polian is overrated, his FA tracker has Carrington rated slightly about what we lost. So, it should be a wash if we can get him without breaking the bank. Seems like his agent would have decent leverage as I read the Bills wanted to bring him back and we are in desperate need at this point. We shall see how this plays out.

    Does this increase the likelihood of trying to resign Keisel for depth? Man, it would be a step back to have to draft DE early since we expected Ziggy and Cam to be our cogs for a good while as 1st round round picks. And, drafting a DE is a slow process being that we completely break them down and build them back up.

  • steeltown

    Not sure this is an upgrade, more of a patch.. though he looked good coming out of college. I have faith in the FO and their scouting of current players, but does anyone really know anything about this guy, what position did he primarily play at Arkansas?

  • Ike Evans

    Its deep as HELL…..I’ll put it like this….you could get Will clarke from west Virginia in the 6th round maybe 5th and here was his stat line this year
    50 tackles, 17 tackles for loss, 6 sacks, 3 forced fumbles, and 3 batted passes….shit, you could get kelcey quarles in the 5th and he had 9 sacks…that’s how deep it is this year….its arguable the 2 best 3-4 dlineman Before the season are rated low this year because they got hurt….dominique easly from Florida and ben Gardner from stanford

  • Virdin Barzey

    The 8-8 team comments make no sense to me and your not the only one that use it so I’m not picking on you. Ben played well last year but we don’t say he was on an 8-8 team. Or Worrilds whom we just signed.

    The fact is that Woods have been playing much better, look pretty good no matter how much he was bounced around (similar to James Harrison). I definitely don’t think we should pay the Titans kind of money but why let it even get there. Hood was the starter and they knew not to sign him so lock up Woods real cheap as a backup before free agency. Think he wouldn’t have taken it as a guy that’s been bounced around?

    Hard for me to believe Williams and Arnfelt is an upgrade. And if they do, why are they looking at Carrington today? We’ll see.

  • 243546

    This would be a great move. Carrington fits the mold of a Steelers DE. The Bills new coaching staff expected Carrington to have a break out year last season. He’s a strong, technically sound player, with the kind of length we’re used to seeing from Steelers DE’s.

  • The Great Mr Slippery

    Sign this guy now.

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    Naw that’s Kapoor Lewis-Moore. He was the best play on D-line during their BCS champion run.

  • Reg Sayhitodabadguy Hunt

    Everyone that thinks the sky is falling because of the players who left town RELAX i know it hard to see some leave but that was good for all parties involved this way they get the money they think they deserve and maybe start and we get to get to bring in players to help us improve from 8-8 think with all our needs and currently under the salary cap with room for more restructures if need be (it only take about 5 mil to sign ALL the draft picks) we almost have to bring in and sign FA just to fill up some of the roster spots its still early look for more signings later just like we dont get certain positions in the draft they kick the tires on some udfas

  • shawn

    and how exactly are we upgrading our roster .. hmmm

  • shawn

    VERY GOOD POINTS !

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    Not that deep, man. Many prospects are “projected” to play 3-4 but doesn’t offer true experience. Even Louis Nix was a penerating nose tackle, not a run-stuffing nose tackle. We can pick a developmental prospect but to expect them to contribute immediately is silly.

  • shawn

    that is good news

  • Patrick Hotaling

    Can I ask about Ben Tate – would he be too expensive for us or not willing to be a backup anymore?

  • shawn

    nice points

  • shawn

    looks more like a patch to me as well not even close to an upgrade … but i am only looking at his playing experience and not familiar with his talents

  • Matt Manzo

    Anyone know what kinda money Carringtons looking for?
    And is the FO panicking as much as some of the fans?

  • Ike Evans

    What are you talking about ALL of these guys are developmental….ALL of these guys are projects….nobody said anything about immediate impact….we are talking talent….so if you’re not talking strictly talent then this convo isn’t for u….we don’t deal in absolutes when u talk about how deep a position is….aalot of these guys are already playing 3-4 already and have a lot of talent….talent + round drafted =value ,….6th round guy with 3rd round talent pushed down because there are a lot of talented guys at the same position makes a deep class…..all these guys are prospects….clearly…if ur gonna argue that why do we talk about the draft at all?….that’s like a guy walking up to two astronomers talking about constellations and saying to them “who cares they’re so far away ” ummmm clearly they’re far away bro but that has shit to do with the specifics we were just discussing

  • Jeff

    I’m starting to feel a little warmer about this offseason. If we somehow draft Justin Gilbert in round 1, AND get Ben a bigger target in the early rounds, I’ll be a happy camper…

  • steeltown

    Not sure any prospect outside of a top tier offensive skill position player (or a specialist) can be expected to contribute immediately

  • sean mcmartin

    Replacing the defensive linemen the steelers just lost, is not so bad, Heyward is the only good one. For whatever reasons. There was no pressure from the front line. Time to see if they can find guys that are more like cameron heyward.

  • Kenneth Wilt

    Interesting report…read the “who he reminds me of”…

    http://draftboardinsider.com/cgi-bin/prospect.cgi?id=912

  • steeltown

    Very true.. and the more I investigate it appears that Carrington could be a better fit than Ziggy ever was.. it also seems as if Carrington was more productive in college

  • steeltown

    The more I read, the more I like this kid

  • 20Stoney

    I don’t know the answer to your first question. I’m pretty sure the answer to the second is “no”!

  • Justin Barlow

    I think this deal has to get done today. We have a chasm on the DL at this point. Would ideally like to sign two young DEs and a veteran ILB (Daryl Smith anyone?) prior to the draft so that we can focus on CB, WR, and RB

  • srdan

    Ben played terrible for the first 4 games. 5 picks 5 TDs. After that it was 23 tds 9 picks and we went 8-4. koinkidunce?.

  • cencalsteeler

    We carried a team last year who gave up around 1900 yards rushing and over 3700 yards passing. In order to bring those stats down, we need to get better at certain positions (QB is not the issue and Worilds signing is addressing that issue, pass rush improvement). Woods saw the field because he was what the team (8-8) had as a best option at the time. He played in 16 games last year and registered 8 assisted tackles, 2 sacks and 2 pass defended. In his four years in the league, he has a combined 22 tackles. I think Steeler Nation gets too emotionally tied to some of these names, because I don’t see pro bowl stats coming from Woods as of yet.
    Now, Williams and Arnfeldt, at this point are backups. Carrington is being brought in to fill Ziggy’s role. As I stated above, IMO, Ziggy has plateaued and it looks like Carrington has an upside to him.

  • Babybull

    DL won’t play him anyway why trade up

  • William Weaver

    Right on the money IMO

  • PA2AK

    If he costs more…someone needs fire. lol. and i think the only thing people see in him is upside.

  • PA2AK

    this is exactly what people need to keep in mind with the moves this offseason. Steelers are balancing a tough task of filling several spots this year without handicapping themselves for the next 5. I think they are doing well. Hopefully they find something to fill the DL depth.

  • cp72

    Looks like guys that ranked around him are signing for 3 yrs 9 million or 4 yrs 12 million…..which sounds about right.

  • PA2AK

    nice info!

  • Jason White

    All I can say is I hope them losing Ziggy and Al isn’t a sign they will go D-line in the first round. This team needs some playmakers on both sides of the ball especially at cornerback.

  • steeltown

    I think Carrington is a far more intriguing athlete with just as much if not more potential than Woods… really the only thing that sucks is Al Woods knew our system

  • Rob

    Great… We are back to signing scrubs and refuse again… Whatever, we need depth anyway.

  • Smashmouth

    i agree i saw him play and he can move well for a big man and if there isn’t any lingering affects with his quad injury he would be an upgrade

  • steelster

    I think gilbert and maybe dennard could be game 1 starters in 2014.

  • http://thereactionblog.com Michael Stickings

    If he’s over the injury that derailed his 2013 season, he’d probably be a great pickup for the Steelers, maybe even an upgrade over Hood (who, let’s face it, never really panned out — a lost first-round pick, or at least a really disappointing one). He was well regarded coming out of college, seen to be a second rounder, and while he didn’t put up numbers of note in Buffalo, sometimes it takes even highly talented guys a few years to adjust to the pro game. That could have been last year in Buffalo. Maybe we get him just as he’s about to play up to those early expectations. And if he’s even decent, a d-line bookended by him and Heyward, maybe with Keisel or another vet backing them up, would be pretty solid, allowing us to address bigger holes/problems elsewhere.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    I wanted us to draft Carrington the year he came out but my problem with this is that at the moment he is damaged goods. We allowed 2 perfectly heathy people go for a guy who we have no idea how he will produce. DE is also seems like a hard position to learn in the LeBeau defense.

  • steeltown

    3yrs $9MIL would be great!

  • cp72

    Yeah keep the first year cap hit around 1.0 million to 1.5 million that would be good. I am thinking we will have Cotchery signed any day. Be interesting to see what he gets.

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    Should have pinpoint this already; yes there are some good developmental prospects like you said but how much of difference are they from Nick Williams and Brian Arnfelt? Yes this draft class could be deep but that’s what I’m trying to say- its harder to scout a prospect for a 3-4 where in old days there were many 290-300 lbs playing defensive ends (Aaron Smith was a combo DT/DE by the way) so when it come to evaluation part, it is harder because college is going away from strictly 2-gaps D-line.

    And no not all are “developmental”. I guess I worded it wrong- Da’Onte Jones from last year and Stephen Tuitt- they both have actual experience playing in 3-4. The word I’m looking for is “more experienced and safer assessment” of individuals. Can they make the adjustments, or learn within a period of time.

    What I’m really going at is that I don’t see us having the luxury of expecting young players to step in. We need veteran presences now.

  • Sven_Hunkstrom

    Depth for the desperate, I suppose. Carrington not ranked among the top 100 free agents on any such list I could find. Pete Prisco at CBS Sports has him as the 17th best DT (4-3, one would suppose). FWIW, Hood isn’t on any of the lists, either.

  • steeltown

    Cotch.. I think it’ll be another 2yr $3MIL deal, maybe 2yr $4MIL since he has shown to be a valuable piece to our puzzle

  • SFIC

    I was really high on Carrington too.
    I guess if we do sign him, he would have certainly cleared the medical.
    Sure hope so….Carrington would be a great fit for us.

  • steeltown

    Those lists are based off of production in the past, we are scouting and signing based off projected future production

  • SFIC

    Hood was a bad fit at 34DE….that was the concern when we drafted him, would he be able to convert from 43DT? Obviously didn’t work.

  • shawn

    would be great if we picked up a diamond in the rough … but i’ll wait until i see otherwise … i try not to get excited about players i dont know !

  • shawn

    actually i think they are in a little panic … dont think this is exactly how they foresaw things going … no need to jump off a bridge of course but it sure doesn’t look like we are getting better at this point, but still early will save my overall analysis until after draft !

  • shawn

    REALLY ??? for almost NO EXPERIENCE … he has 9 starts right ?

    Miami CB that had as good a season as Mitchell got less than that (2.5mil)

  • steelster

    Cotch is a short term answer not a long term so he really isn’t that valuable.

  • steeltown

    He’s basically been our new Ward, he’s clutch and the best blocking WR currently on the Team, not to mention he and Ben have built quite a rapport. Trust the Steelers see him as a valuable piece at a position that lacks experience and depth

  • shawn

    I see it much the same way … we have gone way too long with out going after highly touted playmakers … and those GooseEgg for Turnovers those first 4 games that we went winless are very evident that we are lacking PLAYMAKERS !

  • PA2AK

    Having a short term answer vs. a short term gamble can be pretty valuable when a team has several positions to fill…especially if that short term answer is fairly cheap.

  • Josh Knepshield

    I said they should go after this guy last night, and this morning I screamed at my computer scream when I saw we were. Hoping they sign him.

  • Ike Evans

    Well when you go down the line a lot of these kids this year 2 gap….just for an example Ben Gardner from Stanford and Urban from Virginia both have experience 2 gaping in a 3-4….not even counting the kid from oregeon who run a weird 3-4 hybrid with some 3-3-5 or the kid from west Virginia who 2 gaps or the 3 kids coming out from Alabama which is clearly a 3-4….so from the side I think there is experience but your point is well taken…they are not veterans…and there is a chance they will not offer much more then our young guys already there……however some of these guys have a lot more talent then arnfelt and Williams…a lot more…they were 7th round and undrafted respectively….these guys have more talent BUT have not been in our system yet and have not been in the NFL yet so there’s a chance that talent won’t translate….I agree…we should get a vet too if possible to speed up the curb…even a guy like datone had a bit of a rough year at times with the pack…there just aren’t a lot of JJ watts walking around….those type of guys are none developmental guys to our point….

  • steeltown

    What does a CB have to do with anything

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    Aye aye. I’m high on Arnfelt though, I feel like he’s a guy who can play anywhere on DL because he’s a technican but even we haven’t seen enough of them like you said. I learned to stay away from Bama prospects, their systems run players out of stadium, I can’t remember when’s last time they had a really good player, not a “system player” playing in NFL.

    You are right, those kids played in a 3-4 but most of time their issues are mainly; lack of athleticism or techniques. Both are issues in NFL for a 3-4 late round prospects not pass-rushers. I personally have looked after Buffalo tape because of Khalil Mack, there must be somebody else who shines in their 3-4… nope. That’s all Mack. All him.

  • Sven_Hunkstrom

    I think it’s fair to say such rankings, in the aggregate, incorporate future production. Otherwise you’d see Champ Bailey ahead of guys like Verner at that position, for example, rather than fifteen spots below.

    The Steelers are no longer anything special when it comes to identifying talent. I don’t know what happened–my guess is they’re not doing anything different, it’s just the confluence of the law of averages and small data sets–but they cannot reasonably benefit from special pleading any longer.

  • shawn

    Ya Carroll … I know they are different positions but my point was that a proven commodity got 2.5 … why would we want to pay 3 mil for a guy that really hasn’t done much .. yes i know about future projection … i would be disappointed if we picked him up for anything above 2mil

  • shawn

    Dont u think a better philosophy is trying to find guys that you are HIGH on and are confident are going to be successful rather than always looking at how easy they can “Opt Out”

    Not exactly a “WINNING” strategy if u ask me !

  • steelster

    I don’t see wheaton as a long term gamble and cotch hurts his development as a slot receiver. The steelers will most likely address the no. 2 receiver position in the draft.

  • shawn

    have to agree with u on the identifying talent part …. they have not done a great job as of late … am excited about last years draft besides JJ … i hope this year’s draft is even better !

  • PA2AK

    I don’t think Wheaton is a gamble either. The gamble is thinking that Moye is a capable #3, or that they will land the right WR in the draft. Cotch is very affordable, solid veteran, great team player, and all he does is catch first downs and td’s. he’s very valuable. now if they keep him around and stunt someone else’s development, that’s a coaching mistake and not a contracting mistake. Not saying it won’t happen, but it shouldn’t be the concern at this point in the offseason.

  • PA2AK

    could be. DL just isn’t a position too many guys transition into right away.

  • http://pittsburghsportsinat.blogspot.com/ bgsteelfan

    The problem is, he never lived up to that in Buffalo. He’s an OK player, but no better than what we let walk.

  • dave

    If you’re Al Woods, why in the world would you take a “real cheap” deal when you know free agency is right around the corner – unless the Steelers were offering basically what he just got from the Titans.

  • 804Stiller

    I was listening to the most recent podcast and one of the Daves was saying the FO obviously was unhappy DE play opposite Cam. He went on to say they may feel that was more of the issue with our run defense than NT play. I thought that was an interesting assessment. If that’s the case, they may have been prepared to start over on that side. Well, even if that wasn’t the case, that’s what we will be doing………..

  • dkoy85

    Unfortunately the guys they would be high on are too much money. When you are cap strapped and have holes to fill these are the type of players you find- low risk/high reward. Think what would have happened had they signed top tier(guys they would be high on) FS or CB… we’d be screwed right now. They have to be smart with their money.

  • george

    So you’re saying six months after the injury we won’t really know if he’s healed? Not good but there are very few DL available in FA.

  • shawn

    can’t go with that one … Verner got barely more than Mitchell .. and Carroll got half of Mitchells salary .. u can get quality guys and not over spend …. steelers like to overspend from what I’ve seen !

  • dave

    The only money that really counts is the signing bonus or guaranteed money – off the top of my head Verner got something like $14.5 mil and Mitchell is getting around $5 mil

  • shawn

    I wish people would stop saying that … “the only money that counts is the Guaranteed money”

    that is one of the most misguided beliefs i have ever heard …. it does matter more in some cases … but this one does not apply !

  • WIINGY

    PFF called this guy a secret superstar. This guy better not leave town without a deal!

  • Will Hammer

    When you’re 8-8 who cars who leaves and signs else where. Those guys are average at best . Get young run stopping thumpers and 1 teeth knocking out LB…Get a corner that rattles the timbers when he hits you . Get a fast scat running back that compliments Bell that can take it to the house .. On the O line a nasty spit in your face road grader who loves to mix it up …Last but not least a wide out who can fly -and catch the ball for Ben …Not in that order ,but wouldn’t it be nice …

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