ARLINGTON, Texas– Entering the final year of a five-year contract he signed back in 2012, cornerback Brandon Carr makes it clear he wants to remain in Dallas this year.
More importantly, Carr says he expects to be back as well, and return to the Cowboys for the 2016 season.
Asked point blank on Wednesday if he's been asked to take a pay cut by the Cowboys, who are likely hoping to reduce his $13.8 million hit on the salary cap for this year, Carr declined to answer specifically.
"You know I don't like to talk about those things," Carr said about potentially reducing his salary. "I'll let that side, that situation handle itself outside the media. What I will tell you is that I just love being a Cowboy; I love being in Dallas and the community. I look forward to playing another year."
The Cowboys have indeed talked to Carr and his agent about restructuring his contract, but nothing has been finalized. Carr's base salary is $9.1 million for this final year of a five-year, $50.1 million contract. But considering he's never missed a start in his eight-year career, it's not out of the question Carr and the Cowboys could work out a deal that could possibly extend his contract past this year.
For now, Carr said his focus is to prepare for the 2016 season. And the veteran cornerback said he fully expects his ninth NFL season to be in the Blue & Silver here in Arlington.
"I do, unless you guys know something I don't know," Carr said. "I just prepare for whatever happens and (will) be ready. Right now, my thought process is get my body ready, get my mind mentally ready for the grind, and just be ready for wherever action comes."
Carr met with the media on Wednesday during the middle of another charity event in Arlington, not far from AT&T Stadium, the host of Sunday's Wrestlemania 32. Carr teamed up with some of WWE's superstars such as Mark Henry, Goldust, Jack Swagger and Darren Young to visit with kids at the North Texas Youth Education Center.
A few weeks ago at the NFL Owners Meetings in Florida, Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones said nothing had changed in terms of Carr's contract situation. Jones has often praised Carr for his play on the field, but points out his contract is hefty, especially for a cornerback who hasn't recorded an interception in two full seasons.
"We are evaluating the same facts. We're looking at where he is in relation to our cap, where he is in relation to our short-and-long-term commitments," Jones said. "We have not in any way got a decision there for him. His status is the status quo, as to where we were at the Combine."
[embeddedad0]And since he signed the deal, Carr has heard criticism from media and fans that he has been overpaid and hasn't lived up to the deal. However, firing shots back is not, and hasn't been Carr's style.
"I'm just blessed to be able to have a situation to sign a contract like that," Carr said. "I've been playing the game for a long time. You dream it as a kid. My thing is to continue to work. I'm still in this league. I'm still alive. I still have an opportunity to get up each and every day to go do something I love to do, so just go out there and do it to the best to my ability, and we'll see what happens down the road."
For Carr, who made that comment exactly two miles from AT&T Stadium, the cornerback literally hopes his football in 2016 is just that – down the road.