Fitzgerald must pass concussion protocol UPDATE

Posted by Darren Urban on December 16, 2013 – 12:47 pm

No surprise that wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, after suffering a concussion last night in Tennessee, will go through the concussion protocol this week to determine if he can play Sunday in Seattle. That decision won’t be finalized until later in the week. Fitz did pass the tests needed to at least leave the stadium and fly home with the team last night “but that’s still a long way to go from being cleared.” Never know what each day will bring in regard to head injuries.

UPDATE: On his weekly Westwood One radio segment before Monday Night Football, Fitzgerald talked about passing his initial concussion test today. “I feel better than I did yesterday,” Fitzgerald said. He talked about the concussion protocol, saying Monday he saw an independent neurologist who tested Fitzgerald to compare his score to the baseline score Fitzgerald took on the same test in the spring, to make sure Fitzgerald was at the same level.

“Those tests came back positive,” Fitzgerald said. “I was right where I needed to be. (Tuesday) I will see another independent neurologist to get another independent look and at that point it’ll be how I feel going through the week. But right now I’m feeling good and I’m going to get some rest today, some rest tomorrow and get back to work for a big game against Seattle.”

That’s not the only injury concern though. While coach Bruce Arians said quarterback Carson Palmer has a low-grade high ankle sprain and running back Andre Ellington has a thigh bruise and both should be fine, safety Rashad Johnson suffered a bad high-ankle sprain and that’s a major concern. High ankle sprains are usually bad news and mean missed time, and the Cards are already down Tyrann Mathieu. If Johnson is out, rookie Tony Jefferson would be the starting free safety and his backup would be the inexperienced Curtis Taylor.

Arians said Jefferson played well when he stepped in the lineup after Johnson got hurt. “I’m concerned we lost both our safeties the last two weeks and we are down to a rookie,” Arians said. “But it’s Week 15 or 16, whatever the heck it is. (Tony) is not really a rookie anymore. Curtis hasn’t played yet so if he’s out there, I’ll be a little worried because the dropoff from Tyrann and Rashad.”

— Arians said he didn’t think the pass defense’s problem was as much about bad secondary play as much as poor pass rush against the Titans.

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10 Responses to “Fitzgerald must pass concussion protocol UPDATE”

  1. By jakeplummersghost on Dec 16, 2013 | Reply

    Saw Jefferson play his whole college career at Oklahoma. You will not be disappointed, Cards fans! He’s a baller and should’ve been drafted in the third round or so. Him and Mathieu might be a the Cards’ safety tandem of the future, and a damn good one at that.

  2. By John The Draft Guy on Dec 16, 2013 | Reply

    Arians said he didn’t think the pass defense’s problem was as much about bad secondary play as much as poor pass rush against the Titans.

    That is a very good Oline with Roos and Big Country at Tackles , and adding Warmack and Levitre as guards, they are a very good group.

    I’m not surprised we struggled to get to the QB at times. But 3 sacks and several hits on the QB, including the overtime hit that caused the int says we were getting to the QB.

    Probably a little of both to blame.

  3. By Eric G on Dec 16, 2013 | Reply

    Let’s hope Fitz is cleared. Seattle will be extremely difficult to beat at home on Sunday with all of our players, next to impossible without our best receiver out there. I’m looking forward to seeing if they can get #10, then hopefully #11.

  4. By Scott H on Dec 16, 2013 | Reply

    Ugh. Yet ANOTHER obstacle being thrown in the way of the Cardinals while the Niners and Panthers just keep cruising through these easy games. Dammit…

    Ok, I get why you want some good hands out on the field for an on-side kick. Makes sense. But when you get a player like Fitz injured in the process of one of these plays…you wonder if having your BEST offensive players out there is really the way to go.

  5. By Cwood on Dec 16, 2013 | Reply

    Nine wins with two games to go! Who would have predicted the Cards to make things interesting in late December. Okay, I know some of you did but there had to be uncertainty! As a long time season ticket holder, this has been just a plain fun year. Oh I know it’s not over. Love to see 2 more wins. Hope Fitz is ready to go.

  6. By Bay Area Bad Boy on Dec 16, 2013 | Reply

    I think the rule is Fitz could have called for a fair catch in that situation. If the ball is kicked and bounces once very high like that, I think the rule is you can fair catch it. Would love to find out if that is the case and if so, if he was advised of the rule. If its not a pro rule then it may be a college rule. I’m not sure, but its worth looking in to in case the scenario comes up again. And it will.

  7. By johnnybluenose on Dec 16, 2013 | Reply

    This is a bit off-topic but it might generate some comments both pro and con. Most of you would have seen the very hard hit Sunday on the Bengals’ punter that broke his jaw and, I believe, fractured his vertebrae. On PTI tonight it was suggested that the hit, though fair, was unnecessarily vicious. He was basically defenseless and was run over by someone who was 100 pounds heavier and who was running at him fairly quickly. It reminded me a bit of the hit on Kurt Warner following an interception towards the end of the play-off game against the Saints in 2009. Warner announced his retirement shortly thereafter. We all know that football is a collision sport and injuries not only happen, they are expected to happen. It was stated on the show tonight that sometimes a player will ease up and not hit another player as hard as he could have while still accomplishing the required task of blocking or tackling the opponent. When I heard that, I was reminded of a block Larry Fitzgerald made a few weeks ago. Larry effectively removed the player from the play but did so without causing any harm. I remember that the announcer even commented that Larry may have taken it a bit easy on the player and this was not said in a derogatory way. In fact the announcer may have even complimented Larry for the way he plays the game. Now, I do understand that intimidation is part of football and some of you, maybe most of you would think that it is necessary that players hit each other as hard as they can all the time. Fair enough. But it seems a bit hypocritical to me when I hear players saying that they don’t mean to intentionally hurt or injure each other when it seems clear to me that that is exactly what they are trying to do. The NFL wants to make the game safer for the players and they have made rule changes designed to eliminate head shots and knee shots. And they have been fining the players for illegal hits. But the dangerous and even life-threatening collisions continue unabated. The players are bigger, faster and stronger than ever before and I think players need to protect each other more than they do. In other words, play the game the way Larry Fitzgerald does. And not the way that runaway locomotive plays, the one who unnecessarily steamrolled Cincy’s punter.

  8. By Big Ken on Dec 17, 2013 | Reply

    Excited to see Tony Jefferson get a chance to play. Go Cards!!

  9. By clssylssy on Dec 17, 2013 | Reply

    johnnybluebise….I think this is a catch 22 . The league does a lot of TALKING about player safety but as far as I can tell this is only lip service to justify leveraging heavy penalties against players; the player safety issue is total hypocrisy. As football has become faster, players bigger and the game a billion dollar industry, for the league to place more and more restrictions about what is legal, changing the rules to cover themselves against further law suits, is to change the complexion of the game so much that watching hockey, soccer, basketball is more exciting to the fans who are paying the freight. Larry Fitzgerald is one-of-a-kind, not only as an elite athlete but,as one commentator described him, “the most polite player in the NFL” (as he helped Marshawn Lynch up after he blocked him in our first game with Seattle). The sad thing is that sportsmanship doesn’t have a very high priority throughout the NFL and some teams actually encourage winning by any means and through intimidation. They give awards for everything imaginable but there is nothing for Best Sportsmanship & Professional Player! Ii think that rather than “legislating” the game into sissyhoood and preventing players from performing their jobs, perhaps the Player’s Association should address this with the players and appeal to their sense of integrity to regulate themselves…LOL! (I know my comment will draw snickers and Darren thinks I live in an “alternate universe” which is just fine with me!)

  10. By jbeecham on Dec 17, 2013 | Reply

    It’s pretty clear that the NFL needs to address rules for onside kicks because helmet to helmet contact with defenseless receivers is perfectly legal right now. They have rules to protect players for kickoffs where the ball hasn’t touched the ground, but an onside kick usually starts with the ball slamming into the ground & popping up into the air which negates all of the kickoff rules. It’s pretty clear that the new strategy for recovering an onside kick is to send a few fast defensive players to slam into anyone trying to recover the ball as viciously as possible so that the ball is loose & the 2nd wave of the kicking team can recover it.

    Even if they put in defenseless player rules, it’s not going to stop these kinds of hits from happening though because teams are in “Do whatever it takes” mode to get the ball back at the end of a game… they’ll gladly pay a $7500 fine if it gives them a chance to win a game that they wouldn’t otherwise have a chance to win. Even a 1 or 2 game suspension on a special teams player probably wouldn’t be a big deal if it got them a win.

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