The Cardinals PreWeek-3 match up against the San Diego Chargers was ugly. It was ugly stats wise, play wise, and injury wise. I tried time and time again to sugar coat it with something, anything, but to no avail. The Cardinals offense, was yet again hampered by mental errors. Receivers running wrong routes, linemen getting flagged for bad penalties. Levi Brown, who Cardinal fans were excited for this season after missing the 2012 campaign with a shoulder injury, was flagged for multiple infractions.
As Bruce Arians stated in his post game press conference, those are fixable… What cannot be fixed however, are the injuries. Several key Cardinals went down with injuries, TE Rob Housler, WR Andre Roberts, RB Rashard Mendenhall, DT Dan Williams, and G Jonathan Cooper. Roberts appears to be fine, but underwent an MRI to be cautious, Mendenhall will be ready to play Week 1 against the St. Louis Rams, (Per unofficial tweets via Jason LaCanfora and Kent Somers). Housler and Williams are unknowns right now, and we will know more come tomorrow, when Bruce Arians officially speaks about the injuries.
Jonathan Cooper was the Cardinals offensive line savior. He, outside of a few mistakes against the Packers (missing a block on a run play), has not by any stretch of the imagination played like a rookie. He came in and produced just like we Cardinal fans expected of him. But on a routine play, opening up a massive whole for Alfono Smith, his season likely came to an end.
Another lineman, seems to be RG Daryn Colledge, was locked onto his man. He did not however realize that Jonathan Cooper was behind his guy and the horror ensued. The Chargers defensive player was rolled onto the leg of Cooper. Cooper hit the deck, in obvious pain. It was first reported as an ankle injury, and then finally confirmed as a leg, the severity however is not determined. Some are calling it a broken fibula, others a fractured fibula. If it’s broken, he’s out for the year. If it is only a fracture, it’s a 4-8 week recovery process, allowing him to come back by, at the earliest, Week 10.
If you follow the Cardinals, you will know that they already lost a Draft selection. Ryan Swope suffered a concussion, in OTA’s, and per a doctors request, was told it would be best for him to take some time from the game of football. He obliged, and the Cardinals placed him on the IR/Retired list, meaning they hold his rights if he does return to attempt an NFL comeback.
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Cardinals Extra Points:
Cardinals released 10 players today, to make room for the Tuesday deadline of 75 man rosters. They currently stand at 76.
C Deveric Gallington
CB Ronnie Yell
DE Cordian Hagans
DT Jonathan Mathis
K Dan Carpenter
LB Korey Jones
QB Caleb TerBush
T Joe Caprioglio
WR Nick Edwards
WR Jarret Dillard (injury settlement)
Obviously nothing out of the blue, with maybe the exception of Dan Carpenter. He only got one attempt to kick the ball in the game, but a blocking error lead to the ball being blocked.
Eying Two Kickers:
Arizona is apparently looking, and bringing in two other kickers. They are not pleased with Jay Feelys preseason, and like every other position, they want competition. Two guys I’m watching because they seem to fit what Arians wants, are rookies. Brandon McManus, out of Temple, has booted a 50 yard field goal on his lone attempt, and out of 10 kickoffs, 5/10 have been for touchbacks. Arians does not like how Feelys kicks don’t have the leg to go out of the back of the endzone, so it’s likely he is looking for that kind of guy.
Another is Quinn Sharp out of Oklahoma State. He has only had one field goal attempt, from 47 yards which was good, and of eight kickoffs, six have been for touchbacks. Both guys have the leg, and depending on their workouts, have the accuracy, and consistency, that Arians wants.
Williams on the Trade Block:
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Cardinal fans have been disappointed in the lack of urgency by Williams this offseason. After a stellar OTA’s and start to training camp, his knee flared up, and missed the first two games because of it, only returning to practice the last day of training camp, and getting only two carries against San Diego. I doubt Arizona gets anything in the trade, unless Keim and Arians can work off a miracle.
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