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Zac Taylor praises Eli Apple, says Ja’Marr Chase has only scratched the surface

Coach believes in his guys.

AFC Divisional Playoffs - Cincinnati Bengals v Tennessee Titans Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

During media availability at the NFL owner’s meeting, Cincinnati Bengals coach Zac Taylor gave his thoughts on a bit of last season and more on the future of the team.

After a historic rookie season, it comes as no surprise that he sang the praises of wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase. Taylor was asked about what more Chase can do as he continues to grow in the NFL. Taylor’s response may keep defensive coordinators up at night. Taylor says Chase has “only started to scratch the potential, which is scary.”

Wait, we can expect him to be better than what we saw in 2021?!

“He can continue to build on that now that he’s more comfortable living in Cincinnati for a year,” Taylor told’s Geoff Hobson. “Knowing how to get to work. Knowing what the meeting structure is. Knowing what the quality of the corners that’s he going to play against. You get a chance to sit on that information for six months, come back and attack year two, and I’m excited to see what he can do.”

Sign us all up for Chase being even more comfortable and taking lessons from year one and using them to improve next season.

Taylor also discussed another player, who has had many opinions about his play thrown around in the media and with the fanbase since the Super Bowl loss.

Cornerback Eli Apple was a topic of discussion as free agency began and his one-year contract with the Bengals was set to expire. Some wanted Apple back in the fold and others wanted nothing to do with him after giving up two touchdowns in the Super Bowl and due to some of his activity on Twitter.

If you ask Taylor, it doesn’t seem like any of that was a concern within the organization, calling the decision to retain Apple’s services a “no-brainer.”

“If you don’t have a quality corner, people are going to find him and pick on him. Eli Apple is a quality starting corner in this league,” Taylor said. “I’ve got a lot of praise for Eli. I have a lot of respect for the things he did for us this year. He was a priority to try and bring back because I think our team appreciates him.”

With Chase and Apple primed for big roles in 2022, it seems the head coach is more than comfortable with their ability to contribute to what we all hope is a more successful attempt to bring a Lombardi Trophy to Cincinnati.