Injured Arizona Cardinals struggling to contribute


Like other teams in the NFL the Arizona Cardinals have their share of ailing players fighting to regain their pre-injury form

When you look at the roster of the Arizona Cardinals, you can see why they could be Super Bowl-bound. It’s without a doubt one of the most talented groups in the league.

One thing that can foil championship aspirations are injuries. Early on this season the Cards are dealing with players trying their best to play through their ailments.

Wide receiver John Brown in no way resembles the dynamic playmaker of the last two seasons. Since suffering a concussion at the beginning of training camp, the undersized pass-catcher has looked lethargic and lost.

Granted, he has missed a ton of practice time and saw very limited snaps in the preseason. He was a non-factor in the opening game, catching only one ball for a measly eight yards.

As deep as the Cardinals’ receiving corps is, the offense will be much better if the deep threat returns to form. It doesn’t help that fellow receiver J.J Nelson has suffered a shoulder injury, though it doesn’t appear to be serious. The hope is that Brown comes out of his funk soon.

Outside linebacker Alex Okafor has opted to play through a painful torn biceps. What the club can expect from him production-wise is unknown. The acquisition of Chandler Jones made Okafor a backup, but the team hopes he can contribute in a situational role.

Arizona’s quandary at the cornerback position is extremely apparent. Incumbent starter Justin Bethel had offseason foot surgery and still hasn’t fully recovered.

In his absence, rookie Brandon Williams hasn’t seized the opportunity given to him. Veterans Marcus Cooper and Tharold Simon were brought in recently to shore up the position. Bethel could possibly regain his starting job if he can play through his lingering foot pain.

Safety Tyrann Mathieu returned last weekend from the torn ACL he suffered last December. He had seven tackles but he hardly resembled the Pro Bowler he was last year before the injury. The sooner he can get back to being the “Honey Badger “, the better off the Cardinals will be.