Defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin said Bruce Carter wasn’t benched just because of one bad game. It had been coming.
“It wasn’t just San Diego. Let’s stop this,” Kiffin said Wednesday in his weekly session with reporters. “You don’t just make changes because of that. Ernie had played better and deserved to play.”
Carter started last week against the Vikings, playing 31 of the 70 defensive snaps. Ernie Sims played 39 snaps.
“They both played really well at times, and at times haven’t,” Kiffin said. “Bruce came back and played really well last week. Ernie played well before that. He didn’t play well last week. They need to be more consistent. But Bruce came back and really had a nice game, no doubt about it.”
Carter is the third-leading tackler on the team, with 63 and two sacks. Sims is 10th on the team in tackles, with 23 and a forced fumble.
“They are both great young guys. They really are,” Kiffin said. “I wouldn’t have to say that if they weren’t. I wouldn’t say they are bad guys. But I wouldn’t have to say they are great guys, either. They are good guys. They play hard.”
-- Carlos Mendez