Duron Carter is a free agent and there are a number of teams interested in signing the uber-talented receiver.
Carter has had a meeting with the Alouettes while the Argos, Ticats and Lions also initially reached out. B.C. has since decided that it will not make a contract offer for the 2018 season.
According to Carter, if he really wanted to be in an NFL training camp that option is available, but it didn’t sound like playing south of the border was favoured.
Proper fit is going to be essential for both the enigmatic Carter and the teams that he could join. So let’s delve into the rankings for each East Division franchise to potentially sign Carter.
1) Montreal Alouettes
Montreal is where Carter began his CFL career. The 27-year-old was in the city when he learned of his release from the Riders, so it’s clear that he still has an affinity for La Belle Province.
Carter had a productive two-year stint with the Alouettes (2013-2014) that earned him an NFL shot. After spending the 2015 season on the Indianapolis Colts’ practice roster, Carter returned to the Alouettes. Carter played well, but a few incidents — knocking over Redblacks’ head coach Rick Campbell and some player arguments in practice — ultimately led to his release.
The front office and coaching staff has mostly changed since Carter left Montreal. Current general manager Kavis Reed was the special teams coordinator in 2016 and played the role of peacemaker when Carter and former Als’ quarterback Rakeem Cato got heated. That could be a key factor if Montreal wants to proceed with adding Carter.
The ultra-athletic receiver could provide a valuable play-making option for Johnny Manziel, adding a dimension to the Als’ offence that was lost in the trade of Chris Williams. Carter would bring a downfield element to an offence that needs more impactful players and weapons around Johnny Football.
Montreal is the favourite and seems to be the best match in many ways including the most important factor: money.
2) Toronto Argonauts
General manager Jim Popp was the man who brought Carter to the CFL, but the relationship between the two could be fractured after what went down in Montreal when Popp was the GM and released Carter in November of 2016.
Relationships can be repaired, especially when teams are in need of talent. Toronto could use a proven receiver to fill the void left by 2017 Grey Cup MVP DeVier Posey who is with the Baltimore Ravens. S.J. Green, who was teammates with Carter for parts of three seasons in Montreal, continues to make plays, but the Argos offence has been less productive without Posey.
Brian Tyms started the season in his place, but he was released after two games. CFL rookie Rodney Smith has lined up at the boundary receiver spot lately for Toronto and, while he has the physical traits to succeed in the league, Carter could improve the offence instantly and significantly.
It seems unlikely from the outside Marc Trestman would even entertain the idea of bringing Carter aboard the ship, but if the head coach deems Carter worthy to enter the locker room and the team dynamic he holds sacred, the possibility could be intriguing.
Carter has the same agent, Mitch Frankel, as Toronto Raptors’ star Kawhi Leonard and the two athletes know each other well. That might play a role in Carter determining his next football squad and he feels there are a lot of perks to playing in Toronto.
But for the Argos to broker a deal, Trestman and Carter will have to see eye to eye.
3) Hamilton Tiger-Cats
Hamilton is already brimming with American receivers, so a corresponding move would have to happen if an agreement comes to fruition in Steeltown.
Brandon Banks, Jalen Saunders, Chris Williams, Luke Tasker and Terrence Toliver are all proven international targets each with 1,000-yard seasons to their name. Toliver has been the Ticats’ designated import since Williams was acquired from Montreal, a luxury allowed by having a Canadian kicker who can handle all three duties Lirim Hajrullahu.
Pro football is results-driven. If June Jones and Eric Tillman believe Carter can improve their team, the possibility of trading away one of the aforementioned receivers gains momentum.
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