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Evan Mathis Placed On IR

Veteran guard gone with ankle injury, Cardinals take OL John from Miami practice squad

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The Cardinals put guard Evan Mathis on injured reserve Saturday.


The Cardinals wanted to bring in Evan Mathis to give them a veteran guard and leadership next to right tackle D.J. Humphries.

That hope has been dashed five games into the season.

Mathis, who had already dealt with foot and toe injuries this season, suffered a likely season-ending ankle injury Thursday night in San Francisco. The Cardinals put Mathis on injured reserve Saturday.

To replace him on the roster, the Cardinals signed guard/tackle Ulrick John from the Dolphins' practice squad.

Earl Watford is expected to replace Mathis in the lineup, as he did against the 49ers and earlier this season when Mathis missed a game against Buffalo. The Cardinals are also dealing with an ankle injury to starting left guard Mike Iupati, which could also cost him some missed time. Backup tackle John Wetzel filled in admirably for Iupati against the 49ers. The Cards also have rookie guard Cole Toner on the roster.

It's a difficult time to be having injury issues on the offensive line. Over the next five games, the Cardinals will face some of the toughest defensive lines in the league with the Jets, Seahawks, Panthers and Vikings.

John was originally a seventh-round pick out of Georgia State by the Colts and spent the 2014 season on the practice squad. He was signed to the Dolphins' roster from the Colts' practice squad in 2015, appearing in two games.

The Cardinals have not said the extent of the injury. As of now, Mathis could still return after eight weeks, although the Cardinals were expecting to bring back either running back Chris Johnson or safety Tyvon Branch from IR after hernia surgeries. The Cards can only bring one player back from IR.

Mathis will be a free agent after the season, but he is more likely to retire.

"I'm only going to play if someone lets me be a third-down pass rusher," Mathis told ESPN's Adam Caplan.

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