Arizona Cardinals linebacker Alex Okafor has chosen playing through his injury over a likely season-ending surgery.
Okafor tore his biceps tendon Friday against the San Diego Chargers, and Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said he had to make a choice between the two. It appears that choice has been made.
The 25-year-old pass rusher had a breakout 2014 season, racking up eight sacks and one interception.
He followed that up with just two sacks in 2015 — both in Week 1 — and had a disappointing end to the season, missing Arizona’s two playoff games because of a mysterious off the field incident that reportedly was hurting his toe in a swimming pool accident.
Okafor has a lot to play for in 2016 besides bouncing back to his 2014 form. He’s in the final year of his rookie deal, but will have to earn his time on the field, as he’s currently listed second on the depth chart at strongside linebacker, behind offseason trade pickup Chandler Jones.