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Cardinals Claim Alfonzo Dennard

Cornerback, cut by Patriots, adds depth to position after Cromartie departure


The Cardinals have claimed cornerback Alfonzo Dennard off waivers after the Patriots cut him.

Bruce Arians said the Cardinals were "extremely comfortable" at cornerback after the recent draft, despite the team not selecting one after the free-agent departure of starter Antonio Cromartie.

The Cards are clearly keeping their eyes open for upgrades, however, after the team claimed cornerback Alfonzo Dennard from waivers after the New England Patriots released Dennard Tuesday. 

Dennard, a seventh-round pick of the Patriots in 2012, started 20 games in three seasons with New England. He

played in only six games for the Patriots, with four starts, last season before ending the year on injured reserve because of a bad hamstring. When he came out for the draft in 2012, he was thought to be an early-round talent, but dropped after an arrest for assault.

The 5-foot-10, 200-pound Dennard has five interceptions in his career. Dennard has one year left on his contract and his schedule to make $1.5 million. The Cardinals saved $1.6 million on the cap when tight end John Carlson retired Tuesday.

The Cardinals currently figure to start Patrick Peterson and Jerraud Powers at cornerback, with Justin Bethel in line to be the third corner and safety Tyrann Mathieu available to work in coverage if necessary. Arians didn't hesitate in sounding confident about the group following the draft.

"Jerraud Powers played as well, maybe better than Cro the year before," Arians said. "Cro played very well for us last year and allowed us to play J.P. inside, but I've got all the confidence in the world. I think Justin Bethel is ready to break out and allow J.P. to go back inside when we go into the nickel. We have so much flexibility there.

"We've got a couple of guys we really, really like that are undrafted free agents and we also picked up a couple of guys with some length that I'm anxious to get out on the field and look at them. I'm not concerned with that depth whatsoever."

The Cardinals continue on-field prep for 2015

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