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Budda Baker Heads To IR As Cardinals Juggle Roster Again

Long snapper added to practice squad to fill void of Brewer injury

Pro Bowl safety Budda Baker will miss the final two games with a shoulder injury.
Pro Bowl safety Budda Baker will miss the final two games with a shoulder injury.

Budda Baker's season is over, a shoulder injury suffered Christmas against the Buccaneers sending him to Injured Reserve on Wednesday.

Baker, who was named a Pro Bowl starter, played all 81 snaps against the Bucs despite getting hurt at some point during the game. Baker ended his season as the Cardinals' current leading tackler (111), with two interceptions, a tackle for loss, a forced fumble and seven passes defensed.

"When you see the hits he continued to make post-injury, it's incredible," coach Kliff Kingsbury said. "He just kept playing. He acted as if it was a bruise.

"I've never seen anything like it on a football field, the tenacity and toughness and just whatever it takes to win a game."

Baker was hurt on the 44-yard catch-and-run by Tampa Bay running back Leonard Fournette with a little less than 11 minutes left in regulation. Kingsbury said the shoulder will heal on its own without surgery.

The Cardinals also filled the hole created when long snapper Aaron Brewer (pectoral) was placed on IR on Monday by signing long snapper Hunter Bradley to the practice squad. He'll be one of the practice squad elevations each of the last two games.

Those moves were among many the Cardinals made on Wednesday:

  • Defensive lineman Trysten Hill (knee) was placed on IR;
  • Wide receiver Pharoh Cooper and defensive lineman Manny Jones were signed to the 53-man roster from the practice squad;
  • Offensive lineman Lachavious Simmons was designated to return from the practice squad IR;
  • Cornerback Nate Hairston was placed on the practice squad IR;
  • Cornerbacks Jordan Miller and Chris Wilcox were also signed to the practice squad.

The Cardinals had released offensive lineman Wyatt Davis on Tuesday, clearing an extra roster spot.

The Cards travel to Atlanta for a game against the Falcons on Sunday, and close out the season at the NFC West champion San Francisco 49ers in Week 18.