It wasn’t a surprise to hear the news Tony Jefferson was headed to injured reserve Tuesday, but it still underscored the theme of the Cardinals this season after a relatively healthy 2015.
The safety suffered a Grade 2 MCL sprain in Seattle, and coach Bruce Arians had already said after the game Jefferson probably wasn’t going to be able to play in the finale in Los Angeles this weekend. The injury shouldn’t have an impact on Jefferson’s impending free agency.
(Jefferson tweeted out “Ima be just fine” after the game Saturday.)
The Cardinals also were putting right guard Taylor Boggs on IR with a shoulder injury. Rookie
Arians isn’t putting tackle
Arians said Jefferson’s replacement is to be determined. Cornerback
If Cooper returns, there are multiple ways the Cards could go in the secondary, although Arians said the Cards were “very happy” with how Miller played even though Miller had never been a safety.
“Stay deep. And make tackles,” Arians said. “If you are listening in the meetings you should know what everyone does.”
The Cardinals could still add a player – they have two roster openings which will be likely filled by Wednesday – who could play Sunday. Arians recalled when he was the interim coach with the Colts playing the Chiefs and a player who had signed Tuesday and whom he didn’t know notched a sack. Arians asked around on the sideline what his name was.
“Jamal Westerman,” Arians recalled Tuesday with a smile. “I’ll never forget him now.”
Coincidentally, Westerman actually spent time with the Cardinals in 2012 – before he went to the Colts.
BETHEL’S “BEST GAME”
A couple of weeks ago, when asked if
“Justin had his best game as a Cardinal as far as a defensive back, and looked really good at nickel,” Arians said. “He’s a good blitzer, a good tackler, so that’s a good spot for him. It’s just that Ty and others play that position most of the time.”
BOEHM AND THE OFFENSIVE LINE
Boehm will get a start at right guard, even though he is a center by trade. Arians said Boehm committed three mental errors in Seattle, two of which came on the blitz. Quarterback
“(Evan) played really well when he didn’t screw up,” Arians said.
Arians also said he thought right tackle Watford “played lights out.”
THE MATHIEU DECISION
The Cardinals were stuck in a secondary quandary in part because they put Mathieu on injured reserve Friday. Arians said the decision was made to end Mathieu’s season because “he just wasn’t ready to play.”
“He was hurting the team as much as taking the chance of hurting him,” Arians said. “He just couldn’t play at his level.”