Safety seeking stability

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 7:41 AM ET

Donnavan Carter has had several CFL addresses over the past few seasons.

A month ago, he didn't have one at all.

That is until the Winnipeg Blue Bombers came calling, and now he could very well earn a job as the team's starting safety.

The 31-year-old Toronto native was passed over in the Ottawa Renegades dispersal draft, likely due to his age and contract.

The Bombers, who came close but failed to sign Montreal Alouettes safety Richard Karikari during the free agency period, immediately showed interest in the former linebacker and signed him on April 25.

"It feels good to be with a club," Carter said yesterday after Day 2 of Bombers training camp. "There's some stability there, and I want to make a home.

"I've been on a couple teams thus far, and it'd be good to settle down and settle in somewhere."

Carter began his career with his hometown Argonauts in 2000, but he signed with the expansion Renegades prior to the 2002 campaign.

He played safety for the Renegades in 2002 and 2003, but the Hamilton Tiger-Cats turned him into a linebacker when he signed with them in 2004.

He appeared in eight games with the Tabbies last season, but he was traded back to Ottawa late in the campaign.

When the Renegades folded April 9, Carter and the rest of his teammates were left dangling. Some of them were taken in the dispersal draft, while others, like Carter, were signed as free agents.

The rest are currently out of the CFL.

"That was a weird off-season," he said. "Definitely one of my craziest ones so far."

Carter landed on his feet, however, and the Bombers are hoping he uses them to solidify a position that has had eight different starters in the last three seasons.

Also vying for the starting spot are incumbent No. 1 Shawn Gallant, Boyd Barrett, John Sullivan and Ian Logan.

Carter chuckled when it was suggested that he's the front-runner for the job.

"They can say that," he said. "Nobody's gonna give you anything, so I know I gotta work hard.

"There's definitely good competition back there, which is good. I don't mind it all. It's going to make me better."

Head coach Doug Berry said Carter is doing well but has to get back to possessing a safety's mentality.

"The thing with DC is he has to be aware that he doesn't get too involved in the run game, that he does play pass first and run second," said Berry.

"We keep reiterating that to him because he wants to be a very aggressive football player."

Aggressiveness can't be a bad thing when it comes to finding a remedy for a Bomber secondary that last season allowed the most passing yards in league history.

Carter believes he can help.

"Once we're all together," he said, "the sky's the limit."


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