That didn’t take long. One day after visiting the Cardinals, running back James Conner agreed to join Kyler Murray & Co. in Arizona (Twitter link via Jay Glazer of FOX Sports). The Cardinals have since confirmed the deal, making the one-year pact official.
Earlier Tuesday, we learned that Conner recently underwent surgery to fix a turf toe-type injury. That could help to explain why he was still on the board in mid-April. Fortunately, the injury wasn’t all that serious and Conner is expected to be fully cleared by June.
Conner made his mark in 2018, after emerging from Le’Veon Bell‘s shadow. That year, he rushed for 973 yards on the ground with 12 touchdowns, plus 55 catches for 497 yards. Then, in 2019, he was limited to just 464 yards on the ground and six games, thanks in part to knee and shoulder trouble.
This past year, he was on pace for a 1,000-yard season up until he tested positive for COVID-19 in November. Ultimately, he finished 2020 with 721 yards on the ground and six scores, plus 35 grabs for 215 yards.
The Steelers didn’t show much interest in a reunion, even though Conner always said that he wanted to stay in Pittsburgh for the long haul. Now, he’ll have an opportunity to play in warmer weather as he joins Chase Edmonds, Eno Benjamin, Jonathan Ward, and Khalfani Muhammad in the Cardinals’ running back group. With Conner towards the top, the Cardinals hope to replace the production of Kenyan Drake, who left in free agency to join the Raiders.