Even though much of the Detroit Lions contingent is spending the day at Notre Dame's pro day, according to Connor Hughes of USA Today, the Lions are also hosting former Buccaneers linebacker Bruce Carter for a visit.
Carter, 28, is a former second-round draft pick who blossomed with the Dallas Cowboys in the first four years of his career. As a Cowboy, Carter played nearly every linebacker position. The Cowboys transitioned from a 3-4 to a 4-3 defense during his time in Dallas, and Carter shuffled around from an interior linebacker to the strong and weak sides. Carter's most successful stretch was between 2013 and 2014, when he totaled 164 tackles and five interceptions. However, the Cowboys let Carter hit free agency in 2015 and the Buccaneers quickly signed him to a four-year, $17 million deal.
In Tampa, Carter was expected to take over the starting role at middle linebacker, but lost out to rookie Kwon Alexander in training camp. Again, Carter was shifted over to the outside, where he spent most of the time as a situational player. After Alexander was suspended, Carter started a few games for the Bucs back in the middle. He finished the season with just 47 tackles. Having been faced with the decision to pay a backup role player $4.25 million in 2016, Tampa Bay decided to release Carter in early March.
Carter wouldn't be expected to start in Detroit, but he would provide the team with valuable depth and versatility. With Stephen Tulloch still not expected to be with the team in 2016, the Lions are very thin outside of their expected starters (Tahir Whitehead, DeAndre Levy and Josh Bynes). Carter could fill in at any of those positions should the starters face any injuries.