Being smart about Mathieu’s return

Posted by Darren Urban on May 1, 2014 – 4:39 pm

It’s clear by the new episode of “Tenacious” that posted today that Tyrann Mathieu is doing well in rehab. It doesn’t seem that long ago his shredded knee needed surgery and now he’s back on the field jogging. He’s full of optimism, and that’s no surprise for a kid who thirsts to get back playing as soon as humanly possible. His tweet Wednesday night oozed excitement.

But that flashing yellow light you see is a big, fat caution. Even Mathieu acknowledged, when I asked him about the tweet, that everyone wants to make sure he doesn’t get too far ahead of himself. And in the end, that will be one of the biggest storylines surrounding the Honey Badger’s comeback. Mathieu is indeed tenacious. He may have to be protected from himself. There is a reason Bruce Arians has said he expects Mathieu to start on the physically unable to perform list, why the Cardinals have been careful to not set any timetable for Mathieu’s return. The team is going to be smart. Do they want Honey Badger on the field? Of course. But he doesn’t even turn 22 until later this month. He’s got a bright, bright future ahead. In the grand scheme of things, not having him for a handful of games at the outset of the 2014 season isn’t worth any risks.

I am in Steve Keim’s camp, that I wouldn’t bet against Mathieu being the type of guy who can defy the odds. It would kind of fit in his Cardinals’ career already. But it’s a long way from jogging in a straight line to playing defensive back in an NFL game. Mathieu can be a special player. He’s got to be healthy to reach those heights.

Posted in Blog | 11 Comments »

11 Responses to “Being smart about Mathieu’s return”

  1. By jimmip on May 1, 2014 | Reply

    I wish nothing but the best for this young man. I’m excited to see how he is progressing and fully support the conservative approach to getting him back on the field. I never did like holding off til Christmas morning to unwrap gifts but it was always worth the wait.

  2. By Patrick Hoog aka Don't Take Losses on May 2, 2014 | Reply

    Found interesting the Honey Badger’s comments on his relationship with Aeneas Williams. Way to go Aeneas. He’s that kind of guy.

  3. By ored on May 2, 2014 | Reply

    will be fun watching all our returning injured,minter getting his shot,jefferson getting more playing time,newly acquired cromartie,rb and te,finally a legit LT,massies’ chance at redemption…all hitting the field at the same time,almost makes the draft seem anti-climatic.high hopes for this team,but with tempered expectations considering the schedule and our conference.we have much to look forward to with everyone now down with the game plan,,,practice and gelling will bring out the best.

  4. By Dynosoar on May 2, 2014 | Reply

    I see coming back too early vs. the right time simply.

    Too early, several games played on a not fully healed knee leading to a good to great career.

    The right time, miss him for several games (but Arians and Bowles will have accounted for this) and having him back with a fully healed and strengthened/conditioned knee leading to a potential Hall of Fame career.


    How right you are!

  5. By Andy Kw on May 2, 2014 | Reply

    Trade down to the 32 spot and get Deone Bucannon with it. We cannot avoid getting a starting Strong Safety. If Pryor or Clinton Dix is available at 20, get one of them. If not, then trade down to get the 32nd Pick and other additional picks (2nd & 5th). .

  6. By louis on May 3, 2014 | Reply

    you all don’t like what I say but I am speaking the truth. I’m not being negative. I’ve been a Cardinals fan for over 40 years, and they will let you down any given day. That’s why I’m saying this. Please wake up and face reality.

  7. By Darren Urban on May 3, 2014 | Reply

    Louis —

    RE: “Negative”

    Clearly, you never learned what the definition of “negative” is.

    Again, everyone is allowed their opinion. But if you don’t bring something more to the table than “they are going to lose/be terrible/etc” there’s really no reason to reiterate your thoughts over and over.

  8. By ored on May 3, 2014 | Reply

    i would totally support dix at #20,but he won’t fall,and trading back means somebody wants a certain someone at 20…do we also?if not then it’s probably not gonna happen,no team wants to give up picks unless they see reason to.but we seem pretty set at qb,wr,rb,and cb at the moment,so we could pass at those spots if the deal were good enough.

  9. By Dr. G. on May 3, 2014 | Reply

    Testing…. Testing…. the joint movement and stability, of course. A discussion with sports medicine Orthopedists brings forth an observation that over many rehabilitated knee joints, the best performance is commonly shown the second year post surgery. The confidence is better as well.

    A young man like Tyrann can “will” his performance over physical stability. We remember that he rose to his feet and walked to the sideline, only for us to see his knee fold over sideways. So, it is incumbent that Arians/Keim listen to the MD’s and throttle him back as they monitor the fitness of his knee. This means fewer plays and gradual introduction until they know they can remove the governor and let him go all out.

    When given the “go signal,” a naive young man like Tyrann will shoot from the gates like an Appaloosa in a barrel race. Our best to Tyrann…

  10. By cardsalltheway on May 5, 2014 | Reply

    “Mathieu is indeed tenacious”

    So next time you’re surrounded by 4-5 guys on a punt return just go down, if for no other reason(prevent injury/ACL tear) that they’re going to rip the ball out of your hands and cause a fumble.

  11. By clssylssy on May 5, 2014 | Reply

    I have faith that Coach BA will not pull a Mike Shanahan with any player and especially Tyrann whose youthful enthusiasm might need to be “reined in” to protect his future playing career. Every player is different but I think this is where a knowledgeable coach with years of experience will be invaluable. The players know this is a team effort and Coach has nothing to prove or selfish motives, been there done that, was already Coach of the year; they can trust him with their future and the “greater good”. If Tyrann isn’t ready to start right away, BA/Keim will have a backup plan…good things come to those who wait!
    On another note, I see where Mike Florio has inferred that Patrick Peterson might be “holding out” and not attending training camp. What is the status of Patrick’s extension/new contract? I know Fitz restructured so that Patrick and some of the other players could get paid and according to one of your other stories the Cards were watching the contract negotiations for some of the other marquis players, so am now wondering …what’s up? Can you comment on this rumor and what is going on with Peterson? I am more concerned with retaining our major play makers than the draft at this point.

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