On the heels of Mike Jenkins signing, Cardinals GM Steve Keim confirmed Tuesday night that the Cards will also bring in free agent veteran cornerback Chris Culliver in for a visit next week.
“He’s a guy that’s had some success in the NFL and is coming off the ACL, so we’ll see where it goes,” Keim said.
The caveat is that Culliver is coming off an ACL and MCL tear in November, suffering the injury in a practice while playing for Washington. He was released this offseason a year into a four-year contract, although Washington GM Scot McCloughan told the Washington Post Culliver is on schedule in his rehab and should play this season. Culliver, a one-time 49ers, turns 28 in August, although knee injuries have been a constant issue with him over the years. He also tore his ACL in 2012, missing that entire season. Culliver played in only six games last season, but had four interceptions for the 49ers in 2014.
The Cardinals have to figure out (besides how much money he might want) where Culliver’s health is and how it fits into the secondary. Already, Tyrann Mathieu is coming off an ACL and his availability for the opener is still uncertain. Can the Cards afford another player like that? Does he become someone with which Jenkins battles for a spot or could the Cards sign and keep both with younger cornerbacks moved to the side?
One thing Keim made clear: There are expectations for Justin Bethel to start. “The more Justin plays the better he’ll get,” Keim said.
Tags: Chris Culliver, Justin Bethel, Steve Keim, Tyrann Matheiu
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