Cornerback Eli Apple could be targeted in free agency if Lou Anarumo is named the next head coach of the Arizona Cardinals
The drawn-out search for a head coach that has lasted for over a month may finally be coming to an end for the Arizona Cardinals. There’s a very good possibility that it will all be over on Monday, and it looks as if either Lou Anarumo or Mike Kafka will be handed the keys to the squad.
Whoever gets the job will have just over a month to prepare for free agency. Anarumo, the defensive coordinator of the Cincinnati Bengals, may want to surround himself with familiar players. There’s one defender in particular who the Cards front office could pursue if Anarumo gets the gig.
Eli Apple, a former first-round draft pick of the New York Giants, revitalized his NFL career with the Bengals. A lot of the cornerback’s success can be attributed to Anarumo, an assistant who specialized in defensive backs with both the Miami Dolphins and Giants. Could the two reunite in Arizona if Anarumo joins the Cardinals?
Over the past two campaigns, Apple has totaled 98 tackles,18 passes defensed and two interceptions for the Cincinnati defense. The 27-year-old has bounced around the league, logging playing time with the Giants, New Orleans Saints and Carolina Panthers before landing with the Bengals. Apple raised his level of play in Anarumo’s scheme, however, and could be looking to continue that growth with his 56-year-old mentor.
Arizona Cardinals will be addressing the cornerback position in 2023
At the moment, second-year pro Marco Wilson is the only worthwhile corner on the Redbirds roster. Byron Murphy, a fourth-year veteran, is an unrestricted free agent who’s coming off of a back injury. Antonio Hamilton, a 30-year-old journeyman, will also be lobbying for a new contract.
Arizona will obviously be on the lookout for cover guys, and Apple would appear to be a fine fit. The 6 foot 1, 200 pounder entered the league back in 2016 after being selected 10th-overall by New York. In 88 career appearances (78 starts), Apple has tallied 335 tackles, 51 pass breakups, five picks and seven fumble recoveries.
At long last, the Cards are preparing to name the next head coach of the franchise. If Anarumo is the choice, it would not be surprising in the least if Apple follows the well-respected coach to the desert.
(Statistics provided by Pro Football Reference)
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