Cardinals WR Hollywood Brown trending in right direction with foot injury
TEMPE — Through 10 weeks of the season, we have yet to see the pairing of DeAndre Hopkins and Hollywood Brown line up together.
Brown, who landed on the roster following a trade on Day 1 of the 2022 NFL Draft and joined the team just before Hopkins’ six-game suspension for violating the league’s performance-enhancing drug policy, held down the fort in a big way in place of the All-Pro. In his first six games as a Cardinal, Brown rattled off 485 yards and three touchdowns on 43 catches.
But the week before Hopkins’ return to action, Brown suffered a foot injury significant enough to warrant a stint on the injured reserve.
From the sounds of Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury on Monday, though, Brown’s time on the shelf could be coming to a close in the near future.
“I think he’s getting to the point where it’s going to be day to day,” Kingsbury said. “He’s come a long way in a short time.
“I’m not sure if he’ll make it this week, but hopefully sooner rather than later. If not, we’ll give him until the bye and then I would expect those last five (games) he’ll be ready to go.”
Getting Brown back in the fold sometime soon would provide an immediate boost to the Cardinals’ passing game, most notably when it comes down to the deep ball. Although he’s missed the last four games, Brown still leads the team in plays of at least 20 receiving yards with eight.
Despite the addition of deep threat Robbie Anderson, the wideout has struggled to latch onto the offense since joining the team in Week 7, posting one catch on seven targets for negative four yards.
But as we head into the final chapters of the 2022 season, Brown isn’t the only injured Cardinal to keep tabs on:
QB Kyler Murray
Murray remains day to day with a hamstring injury he picked up in the team’s Week 9 loss to the Seattle Seahawks.
While the signal caller logged a pair of practices this past week, he was held out of Week 10 in favor of McCoy.
“I want Kyler to be able to be 100 percent and really take off,” Kingsbury said Monday. “In the last game, he wasn’t able to really separate like he can when he gets in those open spaces and that’s a big weapon for him.
“We want to continue to progress him and see where that thing’s at. We’re playing the (San Francisco) 49ers — that’s a D-line that you better be full speed and be able to run, move and do the things that he can do, so we’ll see how he feels Wednesday and try to go from there.”
This season, Murray has completed 66.7% of his passes for 2,168 yards and 12 touchdowns to six interceptions.
QB Colt McCoy
Murray isn’t the only Cardinals signal caller dealing with an ailment ahead of a Week 11 matchup against the 49ers.
While McCoy turned in a strong showing in place of Murray, the veteran didn’t get out of the matchup completely unscathed, suffering a knee injury in the third quarter of the victory over L.A.
He was seen after the game with his knee wrapped and told reporters he would be getting more tests done Monday.
“I think he felt a little better today, but we won’t know much until (Tuesday) and Wednesday,” Kingsbury said.
In his spot start on Sunday, McCoy threw for 238 yards and a touchdown on 70.3% passing.
OL D.J. Humphries
Humphries is another name to watch as this week of preparation unfolds.
After missing two of the last three games with a back injury, the starting left tackle is considered day to day.
“I think Wednesday we’ll know more,” Kingsbury said. “They’re doing some more tests (Monday) and so we should have a better feel on Wednesday.”
CB Byron Murphy
Much like Humphries, a back injury has impacted Murphy’s availability of late, with the cornerback missing the Week 10 tilt in Los Angeles.
Murphy underwent more testing on the injury Monday and will be re-evaluated on Wednesday.
The corner is putting together a strong 2022 campaign, recording 36 tackles, four passes defensed, a QB hit and a pair of fumble recoveries, one of which was returned for the game-winning touchdown in Week 2.
TE Zach Ertz
Ertz was carted off with a knee injury in the first quarter of the Week 10 matchup against the Rams. The tight end left the field visibly upset.
Despite early reports that Ertz may have avoided a significant injury, word got out Monday that the injury was season-ending.
It’s a brutal blow for the Cardinals offense.
Entering Week 11, Ertz paces the team with 47 catches and four touchdowns to go along with 406 yards.