TEMPE, Ariz. — Larry Fitzgerald is listed on the injury report as having not practiced, but the Arizona Cardinals’ receiver says he expects to play Sunday against the New Orleans Saints.
“I expect to play every Sunday,” the seven-time Pro Bowler said after practice Thursday as he was holding court amongst the team’s offensive linemen.
Fitzgerald is dealing with the same hamstring injury that limited him in practice last week and forced him to miss the final minutes of Sunday’s win over the Detroit Lions.
He said he “feels great,” though, adding that he put in “a full day’s workout” Thursday.
Fitzgerald spent time working on onside-kick coverage during the portion of practice that was open to the media.
Whether or not he’ll suit up and play Sunday remains to be seen, and while Fitzgerald wasn’t looking to give anything away, he did say that he does not subscribe to the school of thought that it may be best to sit out a week to let the hamstring heal.
“I’ve never been to that school before,” he said.
Should Fitzgerald have to miss the game, the Cardinals will once again turn to young receivers Kerry Taylor and Jaron Brown to fill in.
The two combined for four catches and 51 yards against the Lions, and while neither is likely to be featured like Fitzgerald would be, both will need to step up if, in fact, the veteran can’t play.
“Those guys are in the National Football League, so if you can’t play you shouldn’t be here,” offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin said of the ‘next man up’ mentality. “Obviously, when he did come out of the game they had to step up.”
Goodwin and Fitzgerald both expressed confidence in the younger receivers, though there is little doubt everyone would prefer the veteran not miss the game. It’s a big one against a good team, and the Cardinals would certainly be better with No. 11 on the field.
“As a competitor you want to be out on the field, but it was great to see guys rewarded for their hard work and dedication to the team,” Fitzgerald said.