|The Raiders signed veteran DE Andre Carter on Wednesday, hoping he can provide pressure off the edge. (Getty Images)|
They also waived second-year T Joe Barksdale to make room for Carter on the 53-man roster.
Carter has 76 sacks over 11 seasons and ranks eighth among active players in the NFL. He has reached 10 or more sacks in a season four times, including a career-high 12.5 with San Francisco in 2002. Last year, with the Patriots, he had 10 sacks and made the Pro Bowl for the first time, but he suffered a season-ending torn quadriceps in a Dec. 18 game at Denver that required surgery.
Carter said he never considered retiring.
“It was crazy. My wife was at that game,” Carter said. “She ended up running into the locker room and asking me, ‘What do you want to do?' I have a feeling I can come back from this. I'm not done yet."
Carter said rehab was not easy. He worked out six days a week for two-to-three hours a day. He said the dedication paid off Wednesday when the Raiders called.
Ironically, Oakland's next game is at Denver, and Carter said he's ready to play.
“If I wasn't ready then I wouldn't be here,” said Carter, whose father, Rubin, played for the Broncos from 1975-86.
Carter worked out for the Raiders during training camp and again after the season began. He said he was healthy enough to play in camp, but the Raiders weren't ready to offer him a contract.
“I think they knew I was up to speed, but at the same time there were some decisions they had to make,” he said. “They were still trying to figure out what still needed to be done as far as their roster.”
During his time away, Carter worked out for the Rams and Cardinals, too.
Signing Carter means the Raiders have No. 6 and No. 7 first-round picks from the 2001 draft. The 49ers used the seventh pick to take Carter, a first-team All-America selection from Cal, one pick after his new teammate, former Patriots DT Richard Seymour.
Seymour said Carter brings leadership and much more, specifically pressure off the edge, especially since the Raiders have only three sacks through the first three games.
“I think he'll be instrumental,” Seymour said. “He's a proven guy in this league. It will take some time to get his legs under him, but he's a guy that's shown he can rush the passer, and I think that will be essential for us.”
By the time the Raiders announced Carter's signing, Dennis Allen had long finished his postpractice media session. Allen was not available to comment on the move.
He is the third member of the Raiders' 2011 draft class to be cut this season, following CB Chimdi Chekwa, a fourth-round pick from Ohio State, and DeMarcus Van Dyke, a third-rounder from Miami. Chekwa was signed to the practice squad. Van Dyke was signed by the Steelers.
The Raiders traded a 2012 second-round draft pick to New England for third- and fourth-round picks in 2011 that they used for Barksdale and RB Taiwan Jones. Now Barksdale is gone, and Jones has fallen to third string at running back and second string at kick returner.
Follow Raiders reporter Eric Gilmore on Twitter @CBSRaiders.