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Source: Pats still in play for Carter

08.14.09 at 2:28 am ET
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Carter played in Tampa Bay last season. (AP)

A league source has confirmed to WEEI.com that the Patriots still remain as a possible landing spot for free agent defensive end Kevin Carter.

The 6-foot-6, 305-pound Carter, who was in Foxborough for a visit earlier this month, is mulling over a few possible destinations, one of which is the Patriots. A source indicates Kansas City could also be in the mix for the 35-year old defensive end.

New England has been active in their recent pursuit of veteran defensive players this summer. The Patriots swung a deal with Oakland for veteran defensive end/linebacker Derrick Burgess earlier this month, and WEEI.com has confirmed a report they are interested in veteran defensive lineman Vonnie Holliday.

The Patriots, who have operated out of a 3-4 base defense the last several years, played a lot of 4-3 in their preseason opener Thursday against the Eagles in Philadelphia, and their pursuit of Carter and/or Holliday could indicate a desire to build the depth necessary along the defensive line to needed to consistently run a successful 4-3 scheme. (Carter has previously played at left end in a 4-3 defense. He also has experience in a 3-4 as well.)

Carter, a 14-year veteran who was a first-round pick of St. Louis in 1995, had four sacks last season for Tampa Bay. He is considered one of the more durable defensive linemen in recent memory — he started all 16 games for the Bucs in 2008, notching 49 tackles and four sacks, and has played in every career game. In addition, he has missed only three starts in his career while registering 104.5 career sacks.

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