A 10-year veteran, Carter was owed a $4.075 million bonus this offseason. The Redskins' decision not to pick up that option voids the remainder of his deal and makes him an unrestricted free agent.
Carter this past season struggled in his transition from defensive end - the position he played for nine of his 10 seasons. When Mike Shanahan took over as head coach, he directed defensive coordinator Jim Haslett to install a 3-4 system, which required a position change for Carter.
Unaccustomed to blitzing from a two-point stance, Carter admittedly wasn't as effective as he was his previous seasons, including 2009, when he had 11 sacks.
Carter also struggled in pass coverage. To his credit, he never complained.
Carter is the third Redskins player that has been cut in the last two days. On Monday Shanahan cut running back Clinton Portis, who was owed $8.3 million this season. Then earlier Tuesday, Washington cut left guard Derrick Dockery, who was owed $3.82 million.