Allen Park — For the second consecutive year, the Lions have waived Alex Carter as part of the team’s final roster cuts, a source confirmed to The News Friday night.
Carter, a third-round pick out of Stanford in 2015, essentially missed his rookie season after suffering an ankle injury on the first day of training camp. He came back last offseason, but wasn’t able to earn a roster spot out of camp.
After clearing waivers, Carter spent most of the year on the team’s practice squad, before being promoted to the main roster for the team’s Week 16 game in Dallas. He played four special teams snaps in the contest.
This offseason, the Lions asked Carter to convert from cornerback to safety, a switch he embraced. He got off to a strong start, intercepting a deep pass intended for receiver Jared Abbrederis on the first day of training camp. But his efforts once again fell short of earning him a job.
“I think he’s done a fine job,” coach Jim Caldwell said about Carter last week. “He’s competed well, he’s learned well, he’s smart. I don’t think that that’s an issue in terms of him being out of place because he doesn’t know the position. We’ll just see. It’ll come down to a matter of if he’s playing better than somebody else in front of him.”
Assuming he clears waivers, it’s conceivable the Lions look to add Carter to the practice squad again, where they can continue to develop his skills at safety.
The Lions carried five safeties on the roster last season. Glover Quin, Tavon Wilson and Miles Killebrew are locks to make the team, and special teams standout Don Carey is also a safe bet. Carter had been competing with Charles Washington and Rolan Milligan for a fifth spot, if the Lions opted to go that route again.