Kenyan Drake progressing; Cardinals hopeful for S Thompson, TE Williams

Nov 2, 2020, 8:47 AM | Updated: 8:52 am

Arizona Cardinals running back Kenyan Drake (41) is tackled by Seattle Seahawks outside linebacker ...

Arizona Cardinals running back Kenyan Drake (41) is tackled by Seattle Seahawks outside linebacker K.J. Wright during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

Arizona Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury said a week of rest for running back Kenyan Drake has led to significant improvement of an ankle injury suffered Oct. 25 against the Seattle Seahawks.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported last week that Drake was expected to miss “a few weeks” after suffering a slightly torn ligament and high ankle sprain.

But Kingsbury on Monday suggested that Drake, who has not been placed on injured reserve, may not have suffered as severe of an injury as first expected.

Whether Drake could play after the bye this Sunday against the Miami Dolphins remains to be seen.

“He’s day-to-day. I know it looked more severe probably than it’s going to end up being, hopefully,” Kingsbury said Monday. “He’s really made good progress but I’m not sure if it’ll be enough to get him back this week. We feel like from where we started to where we are now, we’ve been very fortunate.”

Drake has 512 rushing yards (eighth-most in the NFL) and four rushing touchdowns in seven games this year. He’s averaging 4.3 yards per carry.

The Cardinals will replace him with Chase Edmonds, but which running back gets backup reps if Drake is out will be decided with a competition in practice, Kingsbury said last week.

Undrafted rookie Jonathan Ward, 2020 seventh-round pick Eno Benjamin and practice squad veteran D.J. Foster are the in-house options to earn snaps.

With Drake potentially sitting out the Dolphins game, Kingsbury sounded more optimistic that the Cardinals could have starting safety Jalen Thompson and starting tight end Maxx Williams back this Sunday. Both are dealing with ankle injuries.

“I’m hopeful,” Kingsbury said Monday morning before Arizona returned to the practice field. “Both those guys, we’ll get out there today and run them around and see where they’re at. It’d be nice to get both of them back, but both of them are kind of day-to-day at this point.”

Thompson went on the injured reserve Sept. 17 after spraining his ankle two plays into the season. He has been designated to return and was working out on the field before the bye week.

Williams has been on the IR since Sept. 21.

With the statuses of three starters in question, two Cardinals tested positive for coronavirus over the weekend, putting potentially two more players in question for the Miami game at State Farm Stadium.

Kingsbury did not say which players tested positive for COVID-19 or which positions they play.

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Kenyan Drake progressing; Cardinals hopeful for S Thompson, TE Williams