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Cardinals May Lose D.J. Humphries, Tyvon Branch

Posted Nov 9, 2017

Notes: Seahawks' Sherman tears Achilles; Gresham's TD; Pierre shines

Cardinals safety Tyvon Branch leaves the game with a knee injury that could be season-ending.

The Cardinals entered “Thursday Night Football” against the Seahawks with a healthy roster but left with multiple injuries that could be season-ending.

Left tackle D.J. Humphries is likely done for the year with an injury to his ACL, while safety Tyvon Branch (knee) and tight end Ifeanyi Momah (ankle) could also end up on injured reserve, coach Bruce Arians said.

Humphries missed four games earlier this season with a sprained knee but returned and was playing at a high level. He went down in the first quarter of the 22-16 loss when his right knee was rolled up on.

“It’s just a shame,” Arians said. “The guy was playing fantastic.”

Branch hurt his knee while trying to defend Seahawks tight end Jimmy Graham on a 6-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter. He left the field without putting any pressure on his right leg. Branch had been one of the better safeties in the NFL through the first half of the season. Momah suffered his injury in the second half.

The Seahawks were hit hard by injuries as well. Star cornerback Richard Sherman tore his Achilles and will miss the rest of the season, coach Pete Carroll said. Left tackle Duane Brown left the game with an ankle injury in the second quarter and didn’t return, and several other players were banged up, including Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson.

“Any time you play these guys, it’s such a physical battle,” wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald said. “Every time I looked up, it felt like trainers were running onto the field. It’s just physical, no-holds-barred out there.”

Some players felt like the quick turnaround from Sunday’s games contributed to the bevy of injuries.

“This (expletive) should be illegal,” Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin said, via the Tacoma News Tribune. “It is not OK.”

GRESHAM CATCHES ANOTHER TOUCHDOWN

Tight end Jermaine Gresham has drawn praise for his run-blocking of late, and he’s also become a big part of the passing game with Drew Stanton under center. Gresham has a touchdown in each of Stanton’s starts, including a 14-yarder on a screen pass in the second quarter against the Seahawks.

Gresham, who had five catches for 64 yards and a score in the game, said he is growing a nice rapport with Stanton.

“I’m just playing my part in the offense and he’s finding me,” Gresham said.

OLSEN PIERRE GETS THE START

Defensive lineman Olsen Pierre received his first career start and was on the field regularly. He had a sack on the opening drive and finished with four tackles, including two for loss.

Pierre was bothered by an ankle injury a few weeks ago but is healthy now and has become one of the more effective players on the defensive front. He had a half-sack against the 49ers last week and has two-and-a-half on the season.

“I just grew mentally, working with guys like Frostee (Rucker) and (Corey Peters),” Pierre said. “I stay after, work the plays with them, work my technique with them. Mentally, I’ve grown a lot.”

DEFERRING THE OPENING KICKOFF

Arians chose to defer instead of receive after winning the opening coin toss, a rarity in his coaching tenure.

The Cardinals’ defense took the field first and forced a three-and-out to set the offense up with favorable field position at the Seattle 48, but running back Adrian Peterson fumbled on the first play and Seattle defensive end Sheldon Richardson recovered.

“After a great possession on the defensive side of the ball and great field position, to come out and give that ball up on the first play, it’s unacceptable,” Peterson said.

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