Arizona Cardinals elevate K Rodrigo Blankenship; WR Brown and OL Pugh to IR
For the third week in a row, the Arizona Cardinals will presumably compete without starting kicker Matt Prater, who has missed time due to a hip injury.
Before they face the New Orleans Saints on Thursday Night Football, Arizona elevated kicker Rodrigo Blankenship from the practice squad. The team also elevated veteran running back Corey Clement, activated offensive guard Cody Ford from the injured reserve list and placed receiver Marquise Brown (foot) and starting guard Justin Pugh (knee) on the IR.
Blankenship signed with the team this week after the Cardinals released kicker Matt Ammendola, the replacement for Prater over the past two games.
Blankenship started this year with Indianapolis but in the season opener missed a game-winning opportunity from 42 yards out while also landing two kickoffs out of bounds for penalties. He was waived before Week 2.
Clement’s elevation likewise signals injury problems in the running back room will persist. Starter James Conner (ribs) is listed as questionable with backup Darrel Williams (knee) being out, leaving third-year pro Eno Benjamin and rookie Keaontay Ingram left on the depth chart.
Ford was designated to return from an ankle injury this week, and he could be utilized at left guard with Pugh’s season being done due to an ACL injury.
Brown suffered a small fracture in his foot in the Cardinals’ 19-9 loss to the Seattle Seahawks at Lumen Field on Sunday.
The injury did not require surgery, but it did merit a visit to Dr. Robert Anderson for a second opinion.
By rule, Brown is now out for a minimum of four games after being placed on IR.
Through six games in his first year in Arizona, Brown leads the team in every receiving category: touchdowns (three), receptions (43), targets (64) and yards (485).
The Cardinals’ next-best pass catcher isn’t a wide receiver, but tight end Zach Ertz, who is second on the team in every receiving category with two touchdowns on 35 catches (51 targets) and 299 yards.
Arizona does get receiver DeAndre Hopkins (PED suspension) back for Week 7, while Robbie Anderson could see limited action after the team traded to acquire him from the Carolina Panthers.