Apple was a fairly late addition last offseason that saw the team really attack the cornerback position. The team also brought in Chidobe Awuzie and Mike Hilton to compete Darius Phillips and Trae Waynes after William Jackson’s departure. Apple ended up beating out Phillips after Waynes suffered another injury.
Apple hade a bit of a rough start, but eventually we saw him turn into a very reliable corner. He made countless plays down the stretch to help this team make the playoffs and all the way to the Super Bowl.
His lasting memory with fans outside of Cincinnati was talking a ton of trash with the Baltimore Ravens and Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill prior to the Super Bowl. However, he then gave up two touchdowns to Los Angeles Rams wider receiver Cooper Kupp in the loss.
The Bengals don’t make it to that point if he doesn’t deflect Tennessee Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill’s pass into an interception before the end of regulation to setup Evan McPherson’s game-winner. He also made a spectacular stop against Hill right before halftime at the goal line, which didn’t allow the Chiefs to score any points to extend their lead.
Apple’s 2021 season was a very under the radar season. We could see the Bengals still add a corner in the draft to add some youth at the position for the long-term. It wouldn’t be a surprise if the team is more than comfortable with him being penciled in as the starter heading into 2022, though.