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Carson Palmer Setbacks Tee Up Drew Stanton

Notebook: Quarterback getting new shoulder opinion; Bishop returns at linebacker


Drew Stanton looks like he might be in line for another start at quarterback with Carson Palmer still dealing with shoulder problems.

The Cardinals thought their starting quarterback was nearing a return last week, when Carson Palmer chucked balls 30 and 40 yards down the field preceding the bye weekend.

After a frustrating few days, his reappearance is not imminent.

Palmer missed practice on Wednesday to see another specialist for a shoulder injury which has regressed, coach Bruce Arians said. Palmer

hopes to find a treatment which can effectively awaken the nerve problem which has kept him sidelined since the season opener against the Chargers on Sept. 8.

"He threw a bunch last Thursday and Friday and then regressed, so we're hoping we can find out why," Arians said.

"It was afterwards (when) something swelled back around that nerve, and it went back to sleep," Arians added.

Arians wasn't yet ready to rule out Palmer from playing Sunday against the Broncos. He said Palmer needs a day and a half of full-go practice, but hopes Wednesday's visit might deliver the necessary solution.

"(Thursday) he's probably doubtful," Arians said. "Hopefully he'll get (the specialist's opinion), find an answer, find a treatment and get back. Then, hopefully Friday, whatever we find out will work, and he'll be able to go."

That scenario seems optimistic at this point, as backup Drew Stanton may be needed for his third straight game of relief. Stanton has led the Cardinals to victories over the Giants and 49ers, but Sunday's road game against last year's Super Bowl participants will be the team's toughest test to date.

"My biggest goal is to not let my teammates down," Stanton said. "That's what I need to continue to do. That's what motivates me."

The state of flux doesn't bother Stanton. While he didn't throw a pass in three consecutive seasons before Week 2, he said even then he prepared every week like he'd be a starter, and that hasn't changed with the uncertainty surrounding Palmer.

"I haven't wavered from that for the past couple years, even when I wasn't getting snaps, because you'd hate to look back and say, 'Gosh, I wish I would have prepared more,'" Stanton said.


Denver quarterback Peyton Manning was sympathetic to the news of Palmer's nerve injury plight. Manning missed the 2011 season because he needed fusion surgery in his neck after a nerve issue weakened his throwing arm.

There were concerns about whether Manning would return to play in the NFL again, but he has started every game the past two seasons with the Broncos. Palmer's injury is not believed to be that serious, but Manning said he's a willing soundboard for anyone with a nerve issue.

"I have become somewhat a resource for guys who have had those kinds of injuries," Manning said. "I am always willing to talk about it. I have had some other players from other sports that have reached out to me or Greek (Steve Antonopulos), the trainer, and talked about what kind of rehab we have done. Have not had the chance to talk to Carson. Obviously I hope he gets back soon."


Logan Thomas admits the tenor of practice has changed for him the past few weeks. The rookie entered the season as the third-string quarterback -- a developmental player hoping to be the starter down the road, but one not expected to see the field in 2014.

He still hasn't played a snap this regular season, but with Palmer on the shelf, Thomas remains one Drew Stanton injury away from action.

"You've just got to go out and prepare like you're a starter," Thomas said. "That's kind of how I've been the last couple of weeks. Just get ready to go, get ready to play because it's just one play away. You've got to do your job when you get called on, so you've got to be ready to do it."

Thomas said the increase in practice repetitions has helped, and when Stanton briefly stayed down after a big hit in Week 3 against the 49ers, he didn't panic. Thomas threw a few warm-up tosses on the sideline, and while he wasn't needed, he wants the coaches to have confidence in his ability.

"I'm slowly getting there, but slowly is getting there still," Thomas said. "I'm happy to be where I'm at."


Linebacker Desmond Bishop understood when a numbers game resulted in his release at the end of the preseason. He's happy they've now swung back in his direction.

The return to health of Alex Okafor gave the Cardinals enough depth at outside linebacker, allowing for the team to cut Victor Butler and re-

sign Bishop, who will play inside linebacker. Bishop was in full gear ready to try out for the Dolphins when he was called by his agent to say the Cardinals signed him.

Bishop was with the Cardinals for three weeks during training camp and said this is the place he preferred to be.

"It's good to feel the energy in here," Bishop said. "The energy is always good when you're winning. Hopefully we keep it going."

The Cardinals made one other roster move Wednesday, adding wide receiver Jalen Saunders to the practice squad. He was a fourth-round pick of the Jets in May and played in the first three games, returning five punts for 26 yards. The team had a spot because cornerback Teddy Williams was signed off its practice squad onto the Bears' active roster.


In addition to Palmer sitting out, running back Andre Ellington (foot), guard Paul Fanaika (knee), linebacker Alex Okafor (thigh), defensive tackle Frostee Rucker (calf) and punter Dave Zastudil (groin) were limited.

For the Broncos, safety David Bruton (ankle) didn't practice, while linebacker Lerentee McCray (knee) and guard Louis Vasquez (rib cage) were limited.

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