TEMPE, Ariz. -- About an hour before Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians met with the media Monday afternoon, he found out safety Tony Jefferson will go through the concussion protocol this week, giving Arizona two defensive backs with head injuries.
Arians said he didn’t know Jefferson was symptomatic until this morning when Jefferson reported to the Cardinals' practice facility. Jefferson’s symptoms didn’t start to show until Sunday night and Monday morning, Arians said.
Patrick Peterson suffered a concussion in the second quarter of Sunday’s 24-20 win over the Philadelphia Eagles.
“Both those guys seem to be OK,” Arians said.
Arians thought Calais Campbell’s injured right knee responded “extremely well” Sunday. The coach knew his star defensive lineman was going to play Friday and watched his performance improve as the game progressed. “He’s fine today. I think he got a lot more confidence, too, as the game went on and [he] got used to the brace.”
Arians isn’t the type of coach to run on the field when a player goes down, but when he saw Peterson laying face-first motionless on the ground, he went out to check on his star corner. “You always hold your breath and say a quick prayer anytime a player goes down like that,” Arians said. Peterson was not knocked unconscious on the play, Arians said.
Arians expects rookie tight end Troy Niklas back on the field this week.
The Cardinals still struggled with running certain routes against specific coverage, and it didn’t show up on film the way it was coached, Arians said, which was “alarming and disheartening.” Arians thought the Cardinals also struggled in the run game, with their blocking and allowing the Eagles to get Carson Palmer off his spot too often. “It was one guy here, one guy there again, and we thought we had gotten over that,” Arians said.
Arians wasn’t happy with how Palmer played Sunday, calling his game “very average for him.” How Palmer handled the Eagles’ blitz disappointed Arians. “I think some of the things, the confusion, will make you see ghosts sometimes. You’re hot. You’re not hot. And you think you’re hot.”
The Cardinals were close to inserting defensive back Justin Bethel in Peterson’s position after Peterson left the game with a concussion in the second quarter and leave the rest of the secondary in the positions they practiced. Instead, the coaches moved Jerraud Powers to outside corner and Tyrann Mathieu to nickel corner. “They’d have rather have gotten those two safeties in those positions, Ty down and Tony back, for the run and the pass, so it worked out really good.”