Report: Cardinals release safety, special teams leader Chris Banjo
The Arizona Cardinals have released safety Chris Banjo, according to ESPN’s Field Yates.
Banjo had spent the last four seasons in Arizona and was one of the more prolific special teams players for the Cardinals since 2019.
That timeline also lines up with former general manager Steve Keim and former head coach Kliff Kingsbury still being at the helm for the 2019-22 seasons before being replaced by Monti Ossenfort and Jonathan Gannon, respectively.
Banjo, who turns 33 on Sunday, went undrafted out of SMU in 2012 and played for the Green Bay Packers from 2013-16 and the New Orleans Saints from 2016-18.
He had the best year of his career in a Cardinals uniform in 2020 when he posted 48 tackles, one pass defensed and one tackle for loss while starting in four of 13 games played.
In 131 total games (seven starts) in his NFL career, the safety amassed 143 tackles (108 solo), three interceptions, eight passes defensed, one forced fumble, two fumble recoveries (one returned for a touchdown) and three QB hits.
However, Banjo also featured as a quarterback at one point for the Cardinals.
In Week 17 of a 25-22 win over the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium during the 2021 season, the special teamer orchestrated this pitch and catch on a successful fake punt conversion on fourth down.
Catch. Of. The. Year. 😳 pic.twitter.com/Y5zw0c0FQR
— Arizona Cardinals (@AZCardinals) January 2, 2022
The Cardinals were so impressed by Banjo’s arm talent that they even officially named him the fourth-string QB behind Kyler Murray, Colt McCoy and Trace McSorley.
Don't see why not 🤷 https://t.co/rfUY2nfOvs pic.twitter.com/N2TOgRA6cw
— Arizona Cardinals (@AZCardinals) January 3, 2022