ARLINGTON, Texas – It certainly seems like business as usual for cornerback Brandon Carr, despite ongoing speculation about his future as a Cowboy.
He was one of several players who attended Sunday's "Taste of the NFL" event at AT&T Stadium benefiting the North Texas Food Bank.
He has been taking part with his teammates in the voluntary offseason workout program at Valley Ranch.
And, he didn't flinch when the Cowboys drafted Connecticut cornerback Byron Jones in the first round this past Thursday night, presumably to compete for a starting job as soon as this coming season.
To Carr, a three-year starter entering the fourth season of a lucrative five-year, $50.1 million contract, Jones is a welcome addition to the Cowboys' secondary. The secondary he still calls home.
"I'm still here," Carr said. "I'm here until told otherwise – that's always my philosophy. I'm here to give my all and do what I have to do to be successful and have my guys ready to play as well."
Following an admittedly up-and-down season in which he did not record an interception for the first time in his seven-year career, there's been speculation the Cowboys might ask Carr to take a pay cut to reduce his $12.7 million salary cap figure for 2015. The Cowboys have not confirmed that they'll make such a request, and Carr also politely declined to discuss his contract Sunday night.
But he did reiterate he loves playing in Dallas.
"I love playing football," he said. "That's been stated many a time. I know how this business is – I know how the game goes. If at the end of the day, if I'm blessed to get up and play this game, that's all I look forward to."
It's been a difficult, emotional year for Carr. He missed the start of training camp after his mother passed away following a long battle with cancer.
He played his best football toward the end of the season and particularly in the playoffs, limiting Detroit's Calvin Johnson and Green Bay's Jordy Nelson to modest catch totals.
"I feel like I was getting there," he said, "Finally getting back to form and just feeling good out there on the field making plays and being comfortable again."
Though Jones clearly adds competition to the cornerback position, the Cowboys say they can also envision the rookie playing free safety if the team can get Carr, Orlando Scandrick and a healthy Mo Claiborne all onto the field together.
"They drafted a guy high, a defensive back which they thought highly of him," Carr said. "Looking forward to having him in the room with us, grooming him and getting him ready to play."
Business as usual.