Well-rounded off the field, Austin Carr hopes for future on the field with Patriots

Well-rounded off the field, Austin Carr hopes for future on the field with Patriots

The Patriots like versatility in their players. Undrafted free agent signing Austin Carr is plenty versatile, but he just plays wide receiver these days. 

Carr’s well-roundedness instead lies in his background in both academics and the arts. As a high-schooler, his sprints on the field were matched with sprints to rehearsal for musical theater. In college, he opted for finger surgery shortly after walking on to the football team because he feared a butter knife incident that cut his finger could hinder his piano playing. 


Yet when he was on the field, Carr was a stud for Northwestern. With 90 catches for 1,247 yards and 12 touchdowns as a senior, the 6-foot-1, 194-pounder was named Big 10 Receiver of the Year for 2016. He also wrapped up a degree from the Kellogg School of management, where he was named an Academic All-American. 

Looking back on his high school days in Benicia, Calif., Carr remembers being spread much thinner. The son of two musicians, Carr played Beast in his school’s production of “Beauty in the Beast,” and was also in its production of “Into the Woods.” He balanced that into a schedule that also included, football, basketball, piano and poetry. 

“They clashed a lot,” he said. “Huge credit to my coaches, who let me kind of balance both. Especially in the winter/spring, you have basketball, then the spring musical. It was crazy. I was kind of a do-it-all, do-all-that-you-can guy and my coaches let me. Somehow, I made a way.” 

Carr didn’t do any theater in college, though he did star in student-athlete talent shows. Now, after going undrafted, he’s actually seen his life somewhat simplified by jumping into the biggest challenge of his career. 

“It’s actually amazing, it’s amazing what life is like just focusing on football,” he said recently at Gillette Stadium. “I don’t have any papers, I feel like the sky is the limit in my improvement, not having to run regressions at Kellogg, or having to write philosophy papers at Northwestern.”’s pre-draft scouting report described Carr as a “big slot receiver who is best left to working on the first and second levels in routes that are more fluid and less angular.” He’s joining a team that’s relatively stacked at receiver -- specifically with players capable of putting up big numbers out of the slot -- so he’ll have to but his newfound time to good use. 

“It is very weird. And then, you know, I’m just plucked out of my community in Chicago, I’m back here in Foxboro,” he said. “I love the city, but I kind of have a lot of time on my hands to study the playbook and focus on football.”

Former Patriots RB Danny Woodhead announces retirement

Former Patriots RB Danny Woodhead announces retirement

Former Patriots running back Danny Woodhead has announced his retirement after 10 years in the NFL.

The 33-year-old took to Instagram to make it official.

10 years! Wow, God had crazy plans for a small little kid from North Platte, NE! It’s been a wild ride and feel so blessed He allowed me to do what I loved for so long. But now it’s time to say goodbye to the game I love. First, I want to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! Without Him my career wouldn’t have been possible. He blessed me with the gifts and He paved the way. All I had to do was follow His plans for my life, and His plans were crazy awesome! Next, I want to thank my wife who has been by my side since freshman year of high school. She has been a rock through all the ups and downs. Sis, Willy, Mae Mae, and Hopie your daddy is going to be home a ton more and I can’t wait! Thanks to my Dad and Mom for always supporting me and showing me that God is first, then everything else will fall into place. Ben, Joel, and Anna thanks for preparing me for the NFL in our backyard games growing up. The dreaded in-laws Steve and Suzie for always being there for me. Chris Gittings (agent) you’re the best and thankful your my brother/uncle! Thank you Jets, Patriots, Chargers, and Ravens! Thanks to all my head coaches (Bob Zohner, Brad Smith, Bill O’Boyle, Eric Mangini, Rex Ryan, Bill Belichick, Mike McCoy, and John Harbaugh) who believed in me! To my rbs coaches (coach skiles, coach reiners, Jimmy Raye, A Lynn, Ivan, Ollie, Ridge, and Thomas) thanks for putting up with me. Thanks to all my teammates from high school till now. Without you guys I never would’ve become who I was as a player. To all my olinemen, you guys deserve the credit for anything that I received credit for. I thank you for helping make my career. To all the trainers, team docs, strength coaches, chiropractors, massage therapists, physical therapists, body gurus thanks for making sure I was on the field. To all the people who made my life easier at the facility (ops, pr, equipment staff, cafe workers, custodians) thanks and your work doesn’t go unnoticed. And how could i forget all my fans?! You’re the best and have always felt the love and support! I’m sure I’ve forgotten a few but know that I’m thankful for everything everyone has done on my journey.

A post shared by Danny Woodhead (@teamwoody39) on

Thursday, it was reported the Patriots reached out to Woodhead for a possible reunion. 

The last two seasons have been challenging for him, as he dealt with season-ending injuries in both 2016 with the Chargers and 2017 with the Ravens.

Woodhead finishes his career with 2,238 yards rushing, 2,698 yards receiving, 15 rushing touchdowns and 17 receiving touchdowns.


NBC Sports Boston Breakfast Pod: C's win despite injuries, Pats make additions

NBC Sports Boston Photo

NBC Sports Boston Breakfast Pod: C's win despite injuries, Pats make additions

1:20 - Despite throwing a depleted roster out there, the Celtics were able to get back in the win column vs. the Magic. Michael Holley and Tommy Heinsohn break down the win.

6:17 - Finally, the Patriots have done something! On Friday night it was reported that New England signed defensive end Adrian Clayborn as well as running back Jeremy Hill. Tom Curran, Alex Giaimo and Ben Volin discuss the impact these additions will have on the team.

11:05 - While the Celtics were able to pull out the win on Friday, the team did announce that Marcus Smart is expected to miss six to eight weeks after undergoing thumb surgery. A. Sherrod Blakely expresses his optimism on Smart’s return for the playoffs.