Cardinals’ loss of Markus Golden comes on a day of perspective

Oct 4, 2017, 2:13 PM
Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians speaks during a press conference at the NFL Combine in In...
Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians speaks during a press conference at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis, Wednesday, March 1, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
(AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

TEMPE, Ariz. — If a theme emerged from the Arizona Cardinals’ weekly press conference, it was perspective.

“Obviously, it’s great to have a win, and then you wake up and you see what happened in Las Vegas and your hearts and prayers go out to those families who lost lives,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said Monday about the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history. “Hats off to all the first responders again for the great job they did out there.”

The tragedy in Las Vegas, Arians said, “kind of puts football back in place.”

Perspective was needed as Arians addressed what most people were speculating: Linebacker Markus Golden has a torn right ACL and will head to injured reserve, ending his season. The team will wait for several weeks for Golden’s surgery in order to let the swelling go down, Arians said.

Golden was injured after colliding with teammate Budda Baker during the overtime period of Sunday’s 18-15 win against the San Francisco 49ers. Golden was coming off a 2016 season in which he finished with 12.5 sacks and four forced fumbles. Losing Golden is unfortunate, the coach said, but it opens up the door for someone else to step up.

“It breaks everybody’s heart in there because they know how hard he plays,” Arians said. “It takes a lot of spirit out of the defense because he brings it every play. You got to keep going. It’s another guy’s opportunity. I think those guys — Kareem (Martin), Haason (Reddick), whoever it is off the practice squad have to be able to go up and bring that energy because they know what they’re replacing.”

The Cardinals have dealt with adversity before. Rookie and fifth-round draft pick Will Holden practiced at the tackle position all last week but played at guard for Sunday’s game in his first career start, and Arians said he did a decent job. Offensive tackle Jared Veldheer struggled in Week Three’s matchup against the Dallas Cowboys but bounced back against the 49ers.

Fellow offensive tackle D.J. Humphries re-injured his knee last week in practice and is unlikely to play this week. Arians hopes he’ll be available next week against Tampa Bay.

Meanwhile, Arians said there is a chance guard Alex Boone can play this week after suffering a pectoral injury against the Cowboys. The team also re-signed offensive lineman Earl Watford, who spent time with the Cardinals from 2013-2016.

Golden joins running backs David Johnson and T.J. Logan, guard Mike Iupati and cornerback Ronald Zamort as players on the Cardinals’ injured reserve list.

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Cardinals’ loss of Markus Golden comes on a day of perspective