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Cardinals’ David Johnson says back feels better, is a gametime decision

David Johnson #31 of the Arizona Cardinals warms up before the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on October 6, 2019 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

David Johnson is one of the Arizona Cardinals’ top offensive weapons, and his back injury situation seems to be trending positively as Sunday’s game against the Falcons approaches.

“It was just tight. It just felt tight,” Johnson said Friday. “And now it’s gone. I’m good to go.”

That said, Johnson is being called a gametime decision after the Cardinals practiced on Friday.

“He’s feeling better,” head coach Kliff Kingsbury said. “We have 48 hours, and hopefully we can get him all the way there. But it was nice to have him out there today.”

After last week’s win over the Cincinnati Bengals, it was revealed that Johnson — who led the team in receiving yards for the second straight week — was playing through a back injury.

“His back was acting up a little bit and I’m not sure, sometime in the first half,” Kingsbury told reporters after the 26-23 win.

Later in the week, Johnson was held out of practice on Wednesday and Thursday. Kingsbury mentioned the possibility that Johnson could be a gametime decision for Sunday against Atlanta, and that Johnson had enough familiarity with the system that he could play even if he didn’t practice during the week.

“We’re always going to make sure that player safety comes first, make sure that he can play full speed,” Kingsbury said.

Johnson has played all five games for Arizona this year and hasn’t missed a game since 2017. In 2019, he has 511 yards from scrimmage with three touchdowns.

Elsewhere on the injury front, Kirk missed the Cardinals’ Week 5 game because of an ankle injury he suffered the week prior.

In the days after he left the game against the Seahawks in Week 4, the Cardinals found out that Kirk had seemed to avoid the worst with his injury. Still, it precluded him from playing against Cincinnati. It seems Kirk is back running fully, but the rigors of game action are a different story.

“Yeah, that’s what we’re working through,” Kingsbury said Friday. “Straight ahead has looked really good, speed looks great. Just being able to have that reactionary cut in a game, we just want to make sure he’s ready to go if we allow him to play Sunday.”


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