Free agency is well in the NFL's rear-view mirror. For a couple of weeks in March, those out of contract engage with teams looking to find a bumper deal. Every year, a few remain unattached, for a variety of reasons.
For some, retirement might be calling. Others, just reach the natural conclusion of what is more often than not a short-lived career. A few even believe they may get a better deal when injuries strike during training camp.
Only a handful of the 2022 Cincinnati Bengals remain on the market and we take a look at three who could still offer some interest to teams around the league.
Eli Apple, Cornerback
The most high-profile former Bengals player still on the market is Eli Apple. Originally a first-round pick to the New York Giants, Apple finally found a home in Cincy after bouncing around the league. Due to Chidobe Awuzie's injury, he started 18 games in 2022.
There was nothing spectacular about Apple's time in stripes, but he stood in admirably and fought hard for the cause. He will be remembered fondly for his goalline stop against Kansas City in the 2021 AFC Championship game that sparked a remarkable comeback.
The biggest issue with Apple is his off-field persona. The cornerback, and his mother, often have plenty to say on social media. While that may wash for valuable starters, it's a different story for backups.
Apple projects as a depth-only piece, but if some of the newer players in this Bengals secondary don't hit the ground running, Lou Anarumo may be open to a reunion. Indeed, any team that suffers a cornerback injury will likely cast their eye over Apple.